Are the Balearics on a mission to keep tourists away? I know this is a rather stupid question but you get the impression that some people in authority are not listening. First we have the tourist tax. The reason why it has been introduced without too much protest is that the hoteliers are footing the bill because they suspect that if their clients were hit with an additional surcharge they would go on holiday elsewhere. Then there is the Calvia council which has decided to introduce a pay and display parking system in the municipality. Then we have all the industrial disputes ranging from the Calvia cabbies to an all out general strike. I heard someone remark yesterday there was plenty about Majorca on British television but it wasn't exactly the publicity that the island needed. Over the winter we had scores of letters from tourists saying that there was a danger that the Balearics was going to kill the goose which laid the golden egg. At the time I rather dismissed this statement but I am now becoming slightly concerned.

Some of the big tourist resorts resemble ghost towns and not even 39 pound holidays can stimulate the market. It is a sorry state of affairs and some tour firms are already talking about three difficult years ahead for tourism. It has taken 40 years to build the tourist industry the Balearics has at the moment and it would be a great shame if the industry was destroyed because of short-sighted government policy and industrial disputes. I will end this column with this statement “90 percent of our economy depends on tourism.”

Jason Moore

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