Torres assured that “we will make a mistake” if the ban is opened to allow those “more powerful” communities to go free in this regard and recalled the difficulties that arose in the first moments of the pandemic, when all the autonomous governments had to compete in the market to acquire protection material with which to deal with the virus. “Let’s not forget about this,” he said and stressed that we must continue “working together”, because at this time the distribution of vaccines by the State “is transparent.” “I am not because each one goes in an individual race,” he remarked.
“I do not believe that each community should start an individual career in acquisition”
García-Page also expressed his opposite opinion during his visit to Tenerife, where he traveled to participate with Torres in the debate forum Two Presidents. Two responses to the crisis. The president of La Mancha assured that if this situation occurred, the market could collapse. “They are going to deceive us, as has happened with the masks,” he warned.
For this reason, he insisted that the State has reserved European funds to acquire these vaccines, so this is the administration that “must pay for them”, since if that bill is transferred to the autonomies “obviously it will not be the same for the most rich than the poorest ”, something he assured would be a real detriment to the population.
Both presidents, –who also signed an agreement yesterday to promote common electronic medical records throughout Spain–, conducted during the debate a review of the last year of the crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic, from the disconcerting beginning, when no one expected that this virus could so abruptly interrupt the lives of all Spaniards, until now, a year in which both consider that recovery can begin.
Both García-Page and Torres agreed that the vaccine is right now the only opportunity to regain pre-pandemic normality. “The moment we reduce the risk of mortality to a minimum, it will be a turning point for economic recovery,” said the manchego, while for Torres the appearance of the vaccine has been the only great news that has been to overcome effectively the virus. “What took years has been done in months,” he said.
“If there had been no ERTE, 260,000 canaries would have gone into unemployment on March 14, 2020”
Regarding the effects that the health emergency has left in the economic and social sectors, Torres first recalled that the forecasts for the Archipelago were good for 2020, with “a drop in unemployment to 17%”, when historically the Canary Islands usually be around 20%. But the arrival of the pandemic changed everything and right now unemployment rises above 25% of the workforce.
The president of Castilla-La Mancha wanted to highlight the “remarkable” increase that has occurred in mental health diseases and also the effect that the health crisis has had on the care of patients with pathologies that are not related to Covid, which it has been very deteriorated.
Both defended how the strategy of public administrations to face the consequences of the pandemic has changed, unlike the one practiced when the 2008 financial crisis broke out. contain the economic hemorrhage ”, he clarified.
“If we decentralize the purchases they will deceive us as happened with the masks”
Both García-Page and Torres praised the central government’s decision to apply the Records of Temporary Employment Regulation (ERTE) to try to contain the destruction of employment. The Canarian president recalled that without them “260,000 people would have lost their jobs” after March 14 in the Archipelago and unemployment would have risen to 60%.
In García-Page’s opinion, 95% of the Spanish economy will recover and added that in his community, in addition to the direct aid that has been distributed among small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), autonomy is already thinking of another series of incentives to reopen or reinvent businesses.
Regarding tourism, which is the essential industry of the entire country, and which in the case of the Canary Islands represents 35% of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and 40% of employment, García-Page bet that after the passage of the The pandemic will continue to grow, since there is an “enormous” amount of accumulated savings and it considers that once the trips are reactivated, it will be spent “quickly”, because 80% of the tourists who have not come due to the pandemic “will”.
“Reducing the risk of mortality will be a turning point for recovery”
From his point of view, sun and beach tourism will be reactivated sooner, such as that frequent in the Canary Islands, while that more cultural or scenic, and more linked to its community and the inland regions of Spain, will take longer to regain confidence and to travel again.
President Torres insisted that tourism will continue to be a fundamental sector for the Canarian economy, but warned that the Islands, being the community that received the most tourists from all over Spain, “should not have 20% unemployment.” Therefore, he maintains that the recovery should also serve to change the tourism model in the Islands.
The alarm state
The president of the Canary Islands, Ángel Víctor Torres, yesterday expressed his concern about the social consequences that the end of the state of alarm that will foreseeably occur on May 9 will cause. Likewise, he insisted that at that moment, mechanisms should be “set up, ranging from the extension of the ERTE to other measures of a social nature such as the right to housing or the response to the unemployed.” The president of Castilla-La Mancha, Emiliano García-Page assured that what Sánchez said “is not that it ends on the 9th, but that we have to work so that on the 9th it is not necessary to have it.” In any case, he is “convinced” that “if the alarm continues, the State will arbitrate mechanisms.” “We cannot stay in any limbo,” he said. DG