The AMTC says there is a lack of proper dialogue
The mayors of the five member boroughs of the AMTC (Association of Canarian Tourism Municipalities) and the mayor of Pájara (pending membership) took part in a round table discussion yesterday at the ‘Futurismo Canarian 2018’ conference in Arona. Also at the table were the Cabildo president and the regional deputy tourism minister. Discussion focussed on challenges and opportunities for Canarian tourism boroughs the participants examined relevant data from each area and spoke of the “definition of a development model for such an important sector in the archipelago”.
Adeje, Arona, Guía de Isora, San Bartolomé de Tirajana, Mogán and Pájara between them earn 30% of the GDP derived from tourism, and more in secondary income, as Arona mayor José JulianMena explained. “We welcome 7.8 million tourists annually…over 65 million overnights making us a very important tourism resource at European level”. He continued, “the monies we receive for public infrastructure is not in any way equal…the historical investment deficit and bad planning is generating serious problems in mobility and in the end we will lose the competitive edge…we cannot continue patching up the problems such as the south motorway, the secondary roads, the airport or the Los Cristianos port”, he insisted.
During the morning the presidents of the association, and Adeje mayor José Miguel Rodríguez Fraga, alongside the other mayors, detailed actions they are taking as the AMTC, including the preparation of a detailed response to the proposed decree on holiday rentals. Fraga said “we believe there are some contradictions in the proposed decree and we have to be heard on this sensitive matter. We will insist on regulations that are intelligently designed to deal with the problem and turn it into an opportunity”. They will be looking for meetings with the regional government to talk about the law dealing with the coordination of local police forces and other matters which directly affect their borough members.
The mayors also reiterated that among the principal difficulties identified in tourism destinations are mobility, sustainability, necessary language training, financing adapted to the boroughs and investment in public infrastructures.
The mayor of Pájara, Rafael Perdomo spoke of the main problems his borough is facing; “The transformation of an older destination into one that is competitive on its own merits, not due to problems with other destinations, and improvements in public infrastructures”. He also emphasised the value of an organisation such as this one.
Cabildo president Carlos Alonso said he was still unsure as to the exact role of the AMTC as “they haven’t explained it to us”, but said he was happy to advance dialogue between tourism boroughs. The merit of dialogue was agreed by all present. Onalia Bueno, mayor of Mogán, said “we are the most important boroughs from a tourism point of view in the Canarias and we have to be listened to and acknowledged by Cabildos, the regional government, nationally and at European level because we firmly believe we have to have an active role in the decisions which affect the sector”.
Adeje mayor added “there is a lack of real dialogue, where we are being listened to, we have particular issues which need to be resolved…”, stating that tourism and the benefits that arise from the sector need to be seen to benefit the people involved and improve the quality of life of those in the sector.