Spain: The Balearic Islands freeze their hotel stock for four years to avoid tourist saturation
TOURISM The text makes it impossible to create new hotel rooms and the marketing of new tourist accommodation in the Spanish archipelago until 2026
The regional government of the Balearic Islands(Spain) passed a law on Friday prohibiting the increase in the number of hotel rooms or tourist accommodation for four years. The objective is to limit the risk of tourist saturation once the Covid-19 crisis is over.
This text makes it impossible to create new hotel rooms and the marketing of new tourist accommodation in the Spanish archipelago until 2026. After this period, it will be up to the island councils of the four Balearic islands(Mallorca, Menorca, Ibiza and Formentera) to set their boundaries.
A measure criticized by the opposition
The objective is to “bet on the quality” of the tourist offer more than on its quantity, assured on Twitter the socialist president of the region, Francina Armengol, defending a measure turned “towards the future”. It is necessary to think “not only of the visitors but also of the inhabitants, the workers and the territory”, insisted the elected representative, judging necessary not to return to the model of the pre-pandemic, once the health crisis is over.
However, the measure was criticized by the opposition, such as the right-wing Popular Party, which regretted that the regional government had adopted it by decree, “without public debate” in the regional parliament.
The second tourist region of Spain
The Balearic Islands, known for their crystal clear waters and heavenly coves in the Mediterranean, are the second most important tourist region in Spain after Catalonia. They received nearly 16.4 million visitors in 2019, an all-time record. With the Covid-19 epidemic, the number of visitors has since collapsed by half (8.7 million in 2021), shaking the economy of the archipelago while pushing the authorities to think about a more sustainable tourism model.
At the end of December, the island of Mallorca limited the number of cruise ships allowed to anchor there, a measure long demanded by the inhabitants.