|José Manuel Soria (ABC)|
SPAIN The Minister for Industry, Energy and Tourism, José Manuel Soria, announced last week, at a luncheon by KPMG and Europa Press, that the Government 'is not planning' an increase in the rate of VAT (IVA in Spanish) for next year. Nevertheless, he added, should such an increase occur, its impact on the Spanish economy, particularly in the tourism industry, would have to be studied very carefully. However, he insisted that an increase was not on the table. On the subject of taxes, Soria admitted that the Government had promised to reduce them for the tourism industry, but the present climate does not allow for any such thing "for the time being." He did say, though, that electricity charges would have to go up "at some time" to put an end to the deficit in the electricity system.