The leading Majorcan hoteliers will meet in crisis talks on Monday to discuss the controversial tourist tax and the mergers and take-over rumours which have engulf the tourist industry since TUI's purchase of Thomson. There is growing concern locally that further mergers are on the cards leaving Majorcan hoteliers to deal with just three tour firms, probably two German and one British. The new Thomson/TUI giant will bringing close to two million holidaymakers to Majorca every year and it will have a stranglehold on the industry. Yesterday's there was growing speculation that Britain's second biggest tour firm, Airtours, was in the market for either a purchase or a merger. A tie-up with the Neckermann group (German's second biggest tour firm) has been suggested. Shares in the Manchester-based giant continued to rally yesterday and it was reported that Airtours was planning to off-load its stake in First Choice, Britain's fourth biggest tour firm. It is rumoured that Neckermann might launch a bid for First Choice meanwhile it is alleged that Airtours is interested in buying LTU of Germany. As the Chairman of the Sol Hotel Group Gabriel Escarrer said the industry would soon be left with three key players who will dominate the market. Escarrer has called for unity within the Majorcan tourist industry.

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