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The Bank of Spain asks to reinforce the image of Spain as a safe tourist destination

The Governor of the Bank of Spain, Pablo Hernández de Cos, has asked that the high beams be put on the measures that are designed to help the tourism sector. The latest outbreaks and doubts about the effectiveness of vaccines and their application will slow down the recovery of the sector

“There will be no structural changes, but the transition process to recover the pre-crisis activity may be slow,” you assured during your speech at the ‘Save Tourism’ forum organized by the Hotusa Group in which the former minister also participated. Josep Piqué and the president of CEOE, Antonio Garamendi.

Slow recovery

Both the forecasts of the Bank of Spain and those of the World Tourism Organization fix the recovery for mid-2023 in the most optimistic scenario and even in 2024 according to the most pessimistic. “For recovery to arrive, vaccines not only have to work in Spain and in the rest of the world. In addition, the fear and uncertainty component must be eliminated and until that happens, tourists will not be likely to travel. Spain must work in the direction of becoming a safe destination and work on structural changes, which were already necessary before. Starting to look at the long term is not incompatible with acting in the short term ”, he assured.

For this short term, De Cos has once again manifested its alignment with the demand of the sector to apply direct aid as soon as possible. Both he and Antonio Garamendi have praised the success of the measures implemented so far, such as ERTE and ICO loans, but both also conclude that these were the right measures for when it was thought that the crisis was going to be short and it was necessary to ensure the liquidity of the company. Now the situation has changed.

Now the problem is solvency

“We are no longer facing liquidity problems. The ICOs have helped but they have also indebted companies that, without the recovery of demand, will be doomed to solvency problems, ”the Governor of the Bank of Spain has warned.

For this reason he has once again insisted on an idea that he has been launching in recent months, that Spain cannot afford to allocate money to save “zombie companies”. According to De Cos, there are three types of companies with problems: companies that will not see their structural demand greatly modified but will go out of debt for which it has been recommended to facilitate the processes of restructuring, capitalization or direct subsidies; a second refers to companies whose demand will drop by around 10% but which are “perfectly viable” by undertaking internal labor adjustments and a third type refers to “zombie” companies that will not survive, to which they believe that aid should not be allocated public.

More political consensus

To advance in this reform process, De Cos has also recalled that it is essential “a certain political consensus” so that the reforms that the funds of the Next Generation program of the European Union should finance have a path and provide security for international investment.

“No one is saying that politicians cannot have their ideological touches, but they should be more focused on the general and have a more sense of state,” De Cos stressed.

Recover the Imserso

For his part, Antonio Garamendi has focused more on analyzing the policies needed in the short term. The president of the Spanish businessmen has insisted that without the reactivation of demand it will be very difficult for tourism companies to be able to maintain employment as required by the current design of the ERTEs and has asked the Government to adapt to the circumstances. In addition, he has ensured that national travel can be encouraged while international activity recovers. “If the elderly population is already receiving the vaccine and in a short time they will be immunized, we would have to start working on resuming the Imserso program, for example,” he asked.

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