The mayor of Orihuela, Emilio Bascuñana, held a meeting on Monday with representatives of the hospitality sector on the Orihuela coast.

The owners of many different bars, restaurants and nightlife venues told the mayor of their concern regarding the new restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic, that limit their opening hours to twelve thirty at night.

They explained that they may not be able to survive the winter months unless they see a major upturn in their current business during the next 2 or 3 months.

They complained that the restrictions don’t enable them to hold two dinner sittings or to serve drinks after midnight. They also criticised the capacity restrictions.

They also pointed out the lack of aid which they said has been “insufficient or non-existent in some cases”, and demanded that anti-Covid measures are not generalised across the board in an attempt to “control young people” and botellon drinking sessions.

They said that, on the one hand the Community President criticises the UK government for generalising the covid situation and yet he is doing exactly the same.

The mayor explained that all these restrictions are outside his powers, but he will work to make them heard also asking that they are not adopted in such a generalised way.

He also agreed that they are disproportionate stating “I think that before taking these measures they should listen to this sector that is being severely punished. Both the tourism sector and the hospitality sector are safe and the message they send only criminalises them. It is not the most appropriate and they should change it to one of individual responsibility and prudence”.

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