Local Daily News 17th January

The macroplan of San Miguel de Salinas foresees building seven story buildings

The company that has acquired most of the land in the urban macroplan SUS-A Los Invernaderos de San Miguel de Salinas and wants to rescue its development as a new developer plans to market blocks of up to seven floors in the sector.

While the promoter is already “selling” the new developments -only from the real estate point of view- a few weeks ago the process of pruning, cleaning and renovating a sector that has been abandoned next to the town centre since 2009 began. A moment in which the previous development company went bankrupt due to the brick crisis, just when it had already completed most of the development process.

Most of the land in the Los Invernaderos plan, laid out on 700,000 square metres and with the capacity to house 2,000 homes, is owned by Bogey Mediterráneo, of the Aguilar de Molins brothers (Orihuela). Another of these builders’ companies, Santamar, has begun to spread the real estate product as Resort Paradise, with striking architecture that contrasts with the physiognomy of the surrounding town centre, reminiscent of the length of a cruise ship.

In a type of urban development totally alien to the type of tourist construction that has proliferated in residential and isolated urbanizations of San Miguel for thirty years, in which almost all the houses are chalets or semi-detached houses of one and two heights. The performance will change the physiognomy of the municipality forever. San Miguel de Salinas has grown as a second line tourist town near Orihuela Costa and Torrevieja.

The homes planned for maximum occupancy will represent the equivalent of 75%% of the current population of San Miguel de Salinas, around 5,000 new residents over the current 6,600. Sources from the company that owns the land and construction company, which owns more than 80% of the sector, qualified that the condition of developer that will allow them to develop the project must be approved by the plenary session of the City Council.

A legal requirement for which they have already submitted all the documentation. This approval, which would have the support of the PSOE government team, which is the one that promoted the “rescue” of the plan with the process of executing the debts left by the previous developer, is the one that will have to be completed with a period of public exhibition of 45 days.

With final approval, the company must sign an agreement with Iberdrola to provide the entire energy supply project with a high-voltage line from the La Marquesa substation. The promoter has begun pruning and cleaning work on all the trees in the urban plan, which had been abandoned since 2009.

Another part of the vegetation will have to be removed and replaced because the lack of conservation has caused the roots to lift the road and sidewalks. In the absence of assuming the condition of developer, the owner of the land understands that it has the obligation to keep the plots of its property in clean conditions and hence the action that it is carrying out at the moment.

In the roundabout to access the sector from the CV-905 is where the company already announces the resort, with a ground floor and seven heights. In an image reminiscent of the length of a cruise ship with a commercialization of tourist homes at a lower price than that found in the developments of Orihuela Costa and Torrevieja.

This type of building will be located on the plots closest to the centre of the developable land and the green area of the underground boulevard, thus visually adapting to the valley terrain. They require an urban modification that allows redistributing the volumes of built work horizontally to the planning in height.

Alicante workers accumulate almost 1,300 euros of loss of purchasing power in two years

Alicante workers lose purchasing power for the second consecutive year and do so in a more than significant amount, which will force many families to adjust their budgets. Since prices began to skyrocket, with the end of the confinement and the bottlenecks that were generated in the supply of many materials, inflation has already risen by more than 12% in the province, while the average increase agreed in the collective agreements in these two years hardly added up to 4.7%. A difference of more than seven points that translates into a loss of purchasing power of close to 1,300 euros per year per employee, if the latest data from the Tax Agency are taken into account, which place the average remuneration declared in the area at 17,649. euro.

After the small relative improvement of the year 2020, in which the nominal improvement of 1.67% of salaries was added to a slightly negative CPI -although the ERTE cancelled out the real effect in the pockets of many workers-, the first bets of the inflation caused 2021 to close with the first negative balance. Then, average inflation for the year stood at 3.4%, while negotiated salaries barely rose 1.32%, according to the records of the Ministry of Labor and Social Economy. A difference that already represented a first blow of more than 350 euros per employee.

However, the worst was yet to come. It was as a result of the Russian invasion of the Ukraine, which triggered the prices of fuel and electricity. Despite the fact that the measures adopted by the Government have ensured that the interannual rate of the CPI ended December at 5.7%, average inflation for the year in the province was 8.7%. For their part, salaries, although they also grew more than in 2021, did not do so in the same proportion and remained at 3.41%. It was more than the national average – where the increase in wages agreed between employers and unions stood at 2.78% – but, even so, too low to compensate for the price increases.

The result is the loss of another 933 euros of purchasing power, which is added to the 350 of the previous year. In other words, it is as if each worker in the province had suffered a cut of almost 1,300 euros (1,283 euros to be exact) in his salary.

A reality before which everyone recognizes his concern, although each one proposes a different way of dealing with it. “Workers cannot bear more drops in purchasing power, and even less so in a province where wages are already very tight and there is a large part of workers who have very low wages,” points out the general secretary of UGT in l’Alacantí and the Marina, Yaissel Sánchez, who also assures that many companies have taken the opportunity to increase their margins.

Along the same lines, the head of CC OO in l’Alacantí-les Marines, Paco García, recalls that a good part of the economic activity depends on internal consumption, so this loss of purchasing power can lead to an even greater brake of the economy. García is sympathetic with employers’ requests for salary moderation, but insists on the need for the agreements to be signed to include review clauses to recover the ground lost at the end of the agreed period, as contemplated, for example, in the agreement of the footwear that was just signed. “The Government and the EU are spending money to help companies and to curb prices that are starting to pay off. The logical thing is that when the situation normalises, wages will also catch up,” he says.

Some reflections that the CEV employers do not share, which considers it “impossible for wages to rise at the same rate as inflation.” “Agreements are being negotiated and wages are being raised, but these increases cannot compromise the viability of the companies. Maintaining employment is a priority for us, which is why we advocate a moderate increase to promote economic growth and the creation of new jobs work”, says the president of the organisation in Alicante, Joaquín Pérez, who also denies that the companies have increased their margins.

Challenge of the Costa Blanca in Fitur: recover 20% of the volume of business lost due to the covid pandemic

The province of Alicante goes to Fitur from this Wednesday with the aim that the Costa Blanca (127 municipalities come under the umbrella of the Provincial Council) consolidates the recovery after the pandemic, and thus manages to cover that 20% of the market share that remains to be achieved in relation to the data from 2019, before the outbreak of the covid pandemic that kept the sector stopped for many months. The foreign market is reactivated and the spending figure it carries out already exceeds that of before the pandemic, reaching 8,901 million, but obviously marked by inflation. The Valencian Community received 7.5 million foreign tourists until October, a figure that represents 89% of those registered in the same period of 2019, according to the latest data published by the National Institute of Statistics. Benidorm was the municipality with the best average annual occupancy data in 2022 with 76.3%, but it is also the destination that left the most ground compared to the data from 2019, the last year of normality: almost eight average occupancy points less than They are concentrated in the periods of the low season.

Institutional optimism qualified by Fede Fuster and Nuria Montes, president and general secretary of Hosbec. “The recovery of hotel activity is still a pending issue, and we have many doubts that it can be achieved in 2023, although we will work hard for it.” For Nuria Montes, “2023 is going to be a very difficult year due to inflation and energy costs. We are going to have less money to travel on vacations”.

At the gates of the International Tourism Week, the hotel management association Hosbec – 320 establishments with 110,000 beds – has set itself the goal of uniting the voice of the entire hotel and tourist accommodation sector in the Valencian Community. “There are many challenges and difficulties in a year as complicated as the current one is going to be,” underlines Fede Fuster, president of Hosbec who heads a large business delegation that is going to travel to Madrid this week. Apart from Hosbec, the Alicante Hotel Business Association and companies such as the Benidorm hotel chain Servigroup, the largest in the Valencian Community and the Baleària shipping company will also attend.

The challenges of the sector are clear: a year 2023 that is presented with difficulties but with optimism and in which it is necessary to work especially the aspect of production costs without neglecting tourism promotion. Hosbec has already planned the entire promotion for 2023 with margins for modification depending on how circumstances may evolve. “The national market and the United Kingdom continue to be the main points of attention, without neglecting France, Italy and the Nordic countries. In addition, we will pay a lot of attention to the “business” segment together with the sports segment to work on seasonal adjustment and improve brand positioning and prices” reported the general secretary, Nuria Montes.

The possibilities offered by the latest technologies, and in particular the metaverse, will be some of the assets of the Costa Blanca Tourist Board at the imminent International Tourism Fair, which is being held this week, to achieve the goal of re-registering the figures for pre-pandemic visitors.

The president of the Provincial Council of Alicante and the Board of Trustees, Carlos Mazón, and the director of the latter body, José Mancebo, have advanced part of the offer this Monday, where this year a total of 127 will be promoted under the umbrella of the Costa Blanca. municipalities.

More than a hundred monographic presentations have been scheduled as well as 30 professional appointments with tour operators and airlines and more than twenty gastronomic demonstrations in the municipalities, as well as actions to increase the arrival of the main issuing market of visitors, the British, and others within domestic tourism, filming, sports and LGTBI events.

The Torrevieja carnivals will take on a special role in parallel to Fitur, since an extraordinary parade has been planned for Wednesday afternoon in the Plaza de Callao in Madrid, an action that aims to promote its declaration as a festival of national tourist interest.

But the metaverse will be one of the main novelties and commitments of the Costa Blanca Board as a prelude to the face-to-face trip, so that one or more avatars are a foretaste of a stay in the main destinations in the province of Alicante.

The metaverse should help the potential visitor to enjoy an “immersive experience” anticipated by the municipalities of the Costa Blanca to inspire the subsequent face-to-face trip.

Another of the claims of Alicante’s tourist offer will be the confirmation that from March until the end of the year the Provincial Archaeological Museum (MARQ) will host an exhibition with original pieces of the so-called Warriors of Xian. José Mancebo, director of the Board of Trustees, has advanced the main strategic lines that the Provincial Council has arranged for this world event, among which, as he has revealed, the confirmation of the agreement with the Chinese Government, “after long years of work, pandemic , complications, wars and diplomatic difficulties”, to bring at the end of March, and during a period that has been estimated at ten months, the original terracotta figures of the Xian warriors.

For his part, the president of the Provincial Council, Carlos Mazón, praised this Monday the “high level of care, respect and professionalism of the MARQ technical team”, has suggested that this exhibition will be “a great presentation poster for our province, that will receive hundreds of thousands of people to see the warriors”.

Mazón did not want to anticipate more details of this ambitious exhibition, which will be presented on Thursday at Fitur, but he trusts that he will help encourage the arrival of tourists to the province during the present 2023 to achieve the objective of the pre-covid figures.

For his part, the director of the Board of Trustees, José Mancebo, has assured that his organisation will have a “frantic agenda” at the main tourist fair in the country, and one of the main ones on the international calendar, which will have on Wednesday the 18th the day of the Costa Blanca.

The Provincial Council has a stand of more than 200 square metres in hall 7 of IFEMA. The main act will take place in the Central Plaza of the Valencian Community space at 12 noon on Wednesday, where the ‘Augmented Costa Blanca’ project will be presented, a novel proposal that allows the province’s offer to be disseminated through the holographic format.

José Mancebo advances, in this regard, that in parallel “we will deploy an immersive experience to access the multimedia catalogue of brochures and videos of the territory and tourist products in which the user will be able to navigate in a virtual environment and visit all the destinations in our province”. It is a navigation technique that encourages interaction and the culture of the video game, as explained by the director of Costa Blanca who, however, has stressed that this tool “inspires the trip, but what spreads is, finally, the visit in person to our province.

“With these promotional lines we propose our presence in Fitur both physically and virtually, through the projection of the Costa Blanca in the metaverse, a kind of alternative reality to which we will connect using devices that allow us to move virtually and interact with various elements”, The director of the organisation has detailed. Likewise, the Costa Blanca will also have a ‘zero waste’ space for downloading digital brochures.

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