The Federation of Spanish Hotels and the Association of Tourist Hotels yesterday expressed their confidence that central government will tomorrow lodge an appeal against the proposed Balearic tourist tax on grounds that the levy is unconstitutional. The Balearic government doubts that the Prime Minister, Jose Maria Aznar, will go ahead with the legal challenge, claiming that Madrid does not have a valid argument, however, Spain's hotel sector is lobbying central government to do all it can to block the tourist tax. The president of the Spanish Tourist Hotel Association, Felipe Gaspar, said that if central government is seen to be challenging the tourist tax “it will be good for tourism and will show that the tax is a levy which will only damage the tourist industry even more.” “It's not a question of who will win, it's about trying to support the tourist industry. Both the Association and the Federation back saving and protecting the environment - but this is not the way to do it,” Gaspar added.

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