Spain´s tourism chiefs hold crisis talks over Thomas Cook loss

Tourists enjoy a sunny day at the Playa de Palma beach in Palma de Mallorca on September 24, 2019. - Britain has repatriated ten percent of nationals who were stranded abroad after the collapse of travel firm Thomas Cook, as anger erupted over excessive management pay. (Photo by JAIME REINA / AFP)

The collapse of holiday firm Thomas Cook has sent shock waves through the Spanish tourist industry as they count the cost of the loss.

An estimated 7million tourists travel through Spanish airports each year with Thomas Cook and its subsidiaries, according to data collected by airport operator AENA, meaning its collapse could severely damage the Spanish tourist industry – most especially the Balearics and the Canary Islands.

Yesterday tourism chiefs from the regions where visitor numbers are biggest travelled to Madrid to hold crisis talks with a view to mitigating the impact of the collapse.

Spanish labour unions warned that tens of thousands of jobs could be lost while the overall impact of the loss of Thomas Cook business could lead to millions of euros in losses.

Reyes Maroto, the industry, trade and tourism minister in Pedro Sanchez’s caretaker government has called in tourism chiefs from Catalonia, the Canary Islands, the Balearic Islands and Andalusia to discuss measures to “alleviate the negative impact the Thomas Cook bankruptcy will have on the market”

According to El Pais Thomas Cook was one of the five largest international hotel operators in Spain operating a fleet of 105 places and managing 63 hotels.

The hotels alone reportedly employ 2,500 people.