The tourism model is subject to debate. | Pilar Pellicer

On Thursday, the Civil Society Forum presented a document to the Balearic parliament for defining the change to the islands' tourism model and implementation of transition that Covid has exposed is needed.

The introduction to the document states: "The pandemic has made clear that gambling everything on a single card, that of tourism, will not guarantee a secure future; quite the opposite."

The document is intended to assist with later decision-making, the president (speaker) of parliament, Vicenç Thomàs, saying that it offered a good starting-point for "a calm, plural and technically grounded debate".

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Included in the document is a proposal for the conversion of obsolete hotel stock, something that coincides with government thinking. A "deconstruction" plan for the coasts is suggested as is a change of hotel use. A reduction of hotel places would coincide with the construction of VPO social housing and socio-educational facilities. The use of a places' obsolescence index is another idea. Just as companies keep financial accounts, so they should also have social and environmental accounts.

The study does not hide the fact that a reduction of hotel places will mean the loss of jobs, but it proposes alternatives linked to the converted hotels. The plan would include tax benefits and compensation.

Among those attending the presentation on Thursday were Celestí Alomar, who was the tourism minister who introduced the original ecotax in 2002, and David Abril, a former member of the Balearic parliament for Més.

The Civil Society Forum comprises some twenty associations and organisations. These include the Arca heritage association, the environmentalists GOB, the Cercle d'Economia (closely linked to the Chamber of Commerce), unions and the Pimem federation of small to medium-sized businesses.