A Graena hot spring project, the only beneficiary of Board loans to renew mature destinations

A project for the expansion of the hotel facilities in the hot spring resort of Graena (Granada) has been the only beneficiary project of the line of subsidized loans for plans and projects for the modernization of mature tourist destinations in Andalusia, launched by the Ministry of Tourism and Commerce and which is directed, mainly, to local entities, public corporations and consortiums that develop this type of actions.

This figure is in the order of the Ministry which resolved the call for the year 2012 of the line of subsidized loans from the Financial Fund for the Modernization of Tourism Infrastructures (Fomit) for plans and projects of renovation and modernization of tourist destinations mature, where it states that this resolution of concession to Hot Springs Graena “is conditional upon the acceptance of the loan application submitted by the applicant entity, both by the mediating credit institution and the Official Credit Institute (ICO).

According to the order, consulted by Europa Press, once the call for the granting of these loans under the Fomit was made, seven applications were received to participate in the same through the modality of competitive competition.

The entities that submitted applications were Grupo Hoteles Playa, with two applications -one to replace the plasma television and another to modernize the Playalinda and Playasol hotels-; the Municipality of Mijas, with a project for the renovation of accesses and landscape restoration of access to the urban center of Las Lagunas de Mijas.

The Municipality of Torremolinos also submitted applications for this 2012 call, with a project to modernize public infrastructure and improve environmental quality; Benamocarra City Council with an action plan in the fairgrounds and the football field; the Municipality of Hinojares, with an undetermined project; and Aguas Termales de Graena, with a project to tackle the second phase of expansion over 18 rooms in the rural hotel of four stars located in the spa.

In this way, all applications, except for Graena, were denied because they did not meet the requirements to be beneficiaries of this line of loans, in particular, because they did not complete any section of the application, because they were not considered beneficiaries or because dismissal by failing to meet any request for correction in the request made.

The order states that all projects were evaluated according to the evaluation criteria collected in another order. The subsidized loans are charged to the Fomit although it is up to the Ministry of Tourism and Commerce to issue the resolution of concession or denial of applications submitted, once the General Secretariat of Tourism and Commerce has made the proposed provision of funds.

In addition, the order specifies that the deadline for the formalization of the loans will be December 24, 2012. The beneficiaries must submit to the Ministry of Tourism and Commerce, within a maximum period of three months from the end of the deadline to perform the project, the documentation justifying the fulfillment of the financial performance by the amount of the total investment, presentation of a performance report, certificate from the City Clerk, report from the local entity’s auditor and declaration of other income or subsidies that have co-financed the projects.

The order recalls that failure to comply with the obligation to allocate the financing obtained results in the early repayment of the amount of the loan granted that has not been amortized and the requirement of the corresponding interest for late payment.

Likewise, it points out that against this order an administrative contentious appeal can be filed before the Superior Court of Justice of Andalusia (TSJA).

The regret of the counselor

The Minister of Tourism and Commerce, Rafael Rodríguez, regrets that this call “will be almost deserted” and attributes it in part to the fact that “seven percent interest is put by the central government and entities, which meant unaffordable costs “

Therefore, he advocates that “the Fomit of the central government return to what it was before, with affordable financial costs, because this lack of competition does not mean that this measure is not positive, but it is unacceptable how it is being managed and financial costs.”

The line of loans

This line of loans is supported by the Financial Fund for the Modernization of Tourism Infrastructures (FOMIT) of the central Government, and the total sum of the 2012 call for all of Spain amounts to 128 million euros, of which 38 they allocate to consortiums that are executing plans of reconversion of mature destinations and another 90 million to local entities.

In particular, these projects finance the construction, expansion, and remodeling of municipal public infrastructures; installation, replacement or repair of equipment; of expansion of services that improve the offer; as well as the investments aimed at recovering the landscape quality of the destinations and reducing the urban density of the tourist areas.

In the case of local entities, the projects will be eligible for funding “provided that investments in the private tourism sector are aimed at the requalification of the destination and that these are developed in parallel with the public ones”. The net amount of the private contribution must represent, at least, 30 percent of the amount that is to be financed.

The amount of the loans destined for the consortiums that are executing plans of reconversion of mature destinations supported with public funds may amount up to 25 million euros, while, in the case of the local entities, the amount can be one hundred percent of the bankable investment, with a maximum of six million euros and a minimum of 300,000 euros.

Finally, the Board has already informed that in order to value the projects, it would be taken into account that “the investments are carried out in localities integrated into a mature destination conversion program, as well as its connection with the modernization of the infrastructures and the deseasonalization “. It would also reward “the improvement of sustainability, accessibility, quality of services, diversification of supply and application of new technologies.”