BBVA’s Advisory Board in the Canary Islands: the challenges in the tourism sector lie in innovation

BBVA's Regional Advisory Council in the Canary Islands considers innovation and energy transition as primary challenges facing the tourism sector.

BBVA’s Regional Advisory Council in the Canary Islands held a meeting this week of its Regional Advisory Council (RAC) in the archipelago to discuss the challenges facing the tourism sector, which it considers to include innovation and energy transition.

This forum is made up of entrepreneurs and independent experts of recognised prestige in the Canary Islands business world who meet periodically for consultation, advice and debate on relevant aspects of the current economic and social situation.

The meeting was attended by Fernando Alonso, BBVA’s Director of Companies and Corporations in Spain; Xavier Llinares, BBVA’s Director of the Commercial Banking Network in Spain; Rafael Domenech, Head of Economic Analysis at BBVA Research; José Manuel Martín, BBVA’s Regional Director in the Canary Islands; and Guadalupe Hernández, BBVA’s Regional Director in the Canary Islands. BBVA’s country manager in Spain, Peio Belausteguigoitia, also participated by videoconference.

The forum discussed the importance of public-private collaboration, as well as analysing the current situation and the challenges facing companies in the Canary Islands, with a “special focus” on the transformation of the islands’ tourism sector through innovation and energy transition, as reported by BBVA in a press release.

The debate addressed the business prospects of the sectors represented, as well as future challenges and in this regard Peio Belausteguigoitia, country manager of BBVA in Spain, recalled the “importance” that banking has for society in general “as a mobiliser of credit to the real economy, businesses and families, but also through long-term financing with which society can address the main challenges”, such as innovation and the transition to a decarbonised economy.

For his part, the regional director of BBVA in the Canary Islands, José Manuel Martín, stressed that the transformation and sustainability policies that are being developed in the archipelago in all sectors “will be key in the very near future and will be decisive in the case of tourism, the largest industry in the Canary Islands”.

On macroeconomics, they state that the recovery of tourist spending by foreign visitors has given a “differential boost” to the Canary Islands, pointing out that in 2022, overnight stays and occupancy “recovered considerably although they have not yet reached pre-pandemic levels”, although they consider that together with the increase in prices, “it allowed the level of income in the sector to recover in 2019”.

For 2023 they state that the outlook is for growth but “less than in 2022 due to the increase in the cost of transport, growing competition from competitors, the lower increase in household income in the markets of origin, together with the uncertainty and the progressive decrease in the savings accumulated during the pandemic,” said Rafael Domenech, head of Economic Analysis at BBVA Research.

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