Javea Grapevine Issue 182 2016 One - Page 78

Record number of tourists in 2015 Numbers of tourists have shot up in Spain in the past year, with 64.6 million visitors from abroad – nearly one and a half times the country’s population – having travelled there between January and November 2015. This translates as a rise of 4.8% on the same 11-month period in 2014, according to the National Statistics Institute (INE)’s FRONTUR survey. Last year’s 61.7 million was already a record, but consistent increases in foreign visitor numbers have been seen in the past few years. The majority came from the UK thanks to its newly-recovered economy, with the nearly 15 million Brits visiting Spain representing a 4.1% increase. For full story see:ThinkSpain Marina Alta Padrón loses 26,500 in two years For the third year running, the registered number of residents in the Marina Alta has fallen by around 12.7%. The figure for Xàbia has fallen by 1386 to 27,681. Only 11 of the 33 of the municipalities have shown growth, among them being Benitatxell, which is up by 31. From: La Marina Plaza Valencias forgotten “library” of 375,000 books The Valencia Government has brought to light a warehouse full of 375,000 books published at taxpayers expense over 20 years and never sold. These include 65,000 copies of a recipe book “with the only explanation that the introduction was signed the then Regional Minister for Agriculture”, 35,000 copies of notebooks for the Valencian Institute of Modern Art costing some 90,000 euros, and 1,500 books about sculptor Julio González of which only ten have been sold because they each cost 300 euros. The Valencia city council pays €4500 a month to store them. The plan is to distribute the books, in lots of 60 worth around €1,300 to municipal libraries in the region. So far they have received 244 requests from a total of 552 From: Las Provincias Prescription charges for pensioners axed in Comunidad Valenciana Pensioners and their dependants earning less than €18,000 a year before tax will no longer have to pay prescription charges in the Comunidad Valenciana. The left-wing team now leading the Valencia regional government has put aside €41 million to cover the shortfall once State pensioners get their regular medicine free of charge. The free prescriptions will benefit 403,334 State pensioners. (Ed’s note: I hope this isn’t an “Innocent’s Day” joke !)