Souvenir shops in Arenal, Mallorca

A very tough time for souvenir shops in different ways.

25-04-2021

The Balearic government is to receive 855.7 million euros from the Spanish government. This is the Balearics' share of the 11,000 million euro economic recovery package for the regions, which is chiefly directed at businesses in the tourism sector.

There are certain anomalies with this aid, and they arise from the classification of economic activity, a national framework to define businesses that goes under the abbreviation CNAE. Souvenir shops are one such anomaly; they are not covered by the aid scheme because there isn't a single classification to define what can be listed in different ways.

A national association of tourist businesses and souvenirs has been created - Annturs is to demand that regional governments do not exclude them from the direct aid benefits. Its representative in the Balearics, Joan Pere Canals, says that more than 90% of these businesses have been closed since October 2019. "There are more than 2,000 shops and some 5,000 workers on ERTE furlough terms. Because of the CNAE, a sector that has been dedicated to tourism for more than sixty years has not been included in any package."

Easter offered the prospect of some business, but Canals explains that shops opened for a few days and then decided to close. There weren't the tourists.

Wholesalers have been hit by the lack of business activity. One company, Artex Trading, supplies around 1,200 shops in Mallorca. For the 2020 season, it had bought in stock that was subsequently "frozen in the warehouses". Canals notes that there are 42 containers of stock.

The Mallorca branch of Annturs is seeking an urgent meeting with the Balearic government in order to express its concern and to press the claim to be included in the aid package.

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