The Balearic government announced yesterday that it will delay approving the tourist tax proposal for a week after the Majorcan Hoteliers Federation said that it is prepared to negotiate. The hoteliers have been the biggest opponents to the tax and until yesterday, refused to get involved with talks on the proposal, but on the day the government was all set to approve the tourist tax, the Federation asked for seven day's grace, during which time it will open talks with the government in a bid to find “viable alternatives.” This last minute move by the Hoteliers, who will be made to collect the tax if the controversial levy is introduced, was more than welcomed by the government which claims that the tax has substantial “social support.” The government has spoken to all sectors which will be involved with or effected by the tax, bar the hoteliers, in an attempt to draw up the best proposal, but without the hoteliers' support and co-operation, the government faced a tough battle to introduce the tax. It is still not clear whether the hoteliers are prepared to accept the current proposal or will hit the government with a list of alternatives. The present plan, which the government says is “technically completed,” has so far been unacceptable as far as the hoteliers are concerned. The tax, the equivalent of a Euro per day, will be charged to all hotel guests over the age of 12, be they foreign tourists, Spanish visitors of Balearics residents. Clients staying in luxury hotels will be charged two Euros a day and guests in lower quality hotel and apartment accommodation will pay half a Euro a day.

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