Iago Negueruela in parliament on Tuesday. | Europa Press


On Tuesday, the Balearic parliament held its first full session after the summer break, and tourism was top of the agenda.

The minister for the economic model, tourism and employment, Iago Negueruela, was asked for his assessment of the summer's tourism. "Satisfactory," he said, "but we have to improve management and we have to take more measures". There were "tricky moments" in July and August because of the number of visitors, so there has to be management of the flows of tourists. It is "one of the great challenges" facing the Balearics. "If certain measures aren't taken, the flows could be unlimited."

He added that he shares views expressed by the environment minister, Miquel Mir, about eliminating or reducing tourism promotion, given that the government "doesn't promote tourism". "The whole government has supported the same measures over the past two years. This year we have returned to normality, which means that the government doesn't promote tourism, as the island councils do this."

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Negueruela insisted that the debate "is not about whether there are too many tourists". The Balearic government has "openly" stated that more accommodation places are not needed. The opposition Partido Popular, however, "is committed to more volume, more size, more growth and more precarious employment".

For the PP, Sebastià Sagreras asked Negueruela if he was "happy or angry" about the number of tourists who have come to the Balearics this summer, claiming that the minister is "incapable of managing success". He criticised the fact that this summer there has been massive illegal supply (of accommodation), excess tourism, spills on the beaches and problems with public transport.

The minister responded by saying that he was "happy and proud" that there has been full employment, arguing that the PP "only talk about the business side".