Restaurants associations want direct financial aid from the government. | Miquel À. Cañellas


The hospitality industry in the Balearics has welcomed the Spanish government's announcement that there will be 50% social security bonuses (discounts) for "fijo discontinuo" employees between April and October next year.

The CAEB and Pimem restaurants associations agree that this is a good news for businesses in resort areas which open when hotels do. However, it is not of benefit to bars and restaurants which are open all year and don't have employees on fijo discontinuo contracts.

In the Balearics, there are some 9,600 bars, restaurants and cafés. They employ 45,000 people - 17,000 fewer than a year ago, according to Eugenia Cusi, the president of the Pimem restaurants association. Half of all businesses are in coastal areas. Of the other half, she says that 20% have terraces and so therefore may be open. Not all of them are opening, as "it isn't worth their while".

As with other sectors linked to tourism, the restaurants associations are calling for direct financial aid from the government.