Persisting issues with car manufacture. | G. T.

Over the past fortnight, some 3,000 hire cars have been shipped to Mallorca. The gradual reactivation of tourism has meant that car-hire firms are buying more cars in order to try and meet demand.

The president of the Baleval association of vehicle-hire firms in the Balearics, Antoni Masferrer, says that the situation has changed from one of uncertainty to reactivation in the space of less than a month. However, the problem for the car-hire businesses is that there aren't the cars on the market. Shipments are being made, but it is believed that they won't be sufficient to cover all the demand.

The president of the Aevab association, Ramón Reus, agrees that there has been a change over the past fortnight. Nevertheless, "we will be 50% below a normal tourism season in terms of the level of turnover". Manufacturers, he adds, are not attending to the requests of the Mallorcan car-hire sector. This is because there aren't enough new cars. Come July, and he anticipates that there will be a particular problem as there will be that many more tourists than at present.

The shortage of cars, as recently reported, has meant that prices have shot up. In some instances, they are up by three to four times what they were.