By Cathy Elelman • 24 June 2020 • 17:03
WORST HIT: The Balearics are “in an especially vulnerable position” due to the region’s reliance on tourism, the business confederation president said.
CREDIT: Caeb Empresarios Facebook @caebempresarios
SPAIN’S holiday islands Mallorca, Ibiza, Menorca and Formentera are the worst hit region in the country by the Covid-19 pandemic and “are now at recession’s door.”
This was the stark warning from the CAEB Balearic Business Association Confederation President Carmen Planas.
Speaking at a Spanish Confederation of Business Association-organised conference in Madrid on Wednesday, Planas pointed to a CAEB report which revealed that in the first quarter of the year, which covered just the first 15 days of the 98 days of lockdown, the archipelago’s economy shrank 4.5 per cent.
According to the confederation president a recession created by the pandemic could be “very serious” and “very difficult to overcome.”
She said services related to industry and construction, as well as tourism, have been “seriously damaged.”
And while accepting that the whole of Spain’s economy is suffering, she believes the Balearics are “in an especially vulnerable position” due to the region’s reliance on tourism.
She gave the facts the islands saw the highest May increase in unemployment in the country and that poverty in the Balearics has grown more than in anywhere else in Spain as a result of coronavirus.
Planas called for “effective and efficient” polices to govern the islands with the public and private sectors hand-in-hand to mitigate the damaging impact of the health crisis in the short-term and to build the foundations for a reorientation of the destination in the face of what is a changed world.
On a more upbeat note, the CAEB head hailed the Balearics’ pilot tourism project as a success.
She said the extensive media coverage the initiative attracted prompted a surge in bookings, and maintained it had achieved the triple objectives of generating confidence in international visitor markets, showing that the health safety protocols and systems functioned, and served as model for other national tourist destinations.
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Cathy Elelman is the local writer for the Costa de Almeria edition of the Euro Weekly News.
Based in Mojacar for the last 21 years, Cathy is very much part of the local community and is always well and truly up on all the latest news and events going on in this region of Spain.
Her top goals are to do the best job she can informing the local English-speaking community, visitors to the area and the wider world about about the news in Almeria, to learn something new every day, and to embrace very new challenge this fast-changing world brings her way.
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