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APRIL | La Vanguardia (digital version digital), 2/4/14
Hard Rock will construct its largest installation of Europe in the complex of tourism and recreation of the cost of Tarragona, BCN World, Xavier Adserà, who has specified that the group from the United States will be assigned the second resort of the six that the project driven by Veremonte is planning.
At a breakfast conference of PWC in Barcelona, he explained that the international groups are "reluctant" to announce investments until the Parliament has approved the law that would allow BCN World, regulating the urban planning approach, the gaming activity in the area and the gaming taxes, which will be possible after the agreement between CIU and PSC, he pointed out.
Adserà has defended that gaming is essential in the project because it contributes a differential offer and because it is necessary to capture Asian tourism, and has considered that the current taxation of the casinos in Catalunya has a dissuasive rate of 55%, which will go down to 10%: "It is that which seems to us to be internationally competitive, and the Generalitat will receive the same collected revenue or more", since BCN World will pay the difference if the collected revenue is less than the currently collected.
He added that gaming will be a "complementary activity" for the visitors, who during the day will visit the Ebro Delta, Barcelona or Port Aventura, for example, and will go shopping –the complex will include an avenue of luxury stores assigned to Value Retail, and they can play in the casinos in the idle hours or at night, he augured. He also gave much importance to the tourism of congresses, which helps to deseasonalise the tourism, and that values spaces with a large number of rooms for grouping the participants of large events.
Once this law is approved, only one difficulty will remain, to agree with the City Council of Barcelona the use of the trademark Barcelona in the name of the complex, which Adserà is confident will be possible: "I am sure that we will reach an agreement".
With respect to the construction schedule, which is pending the regulations being approved of the Recreation and Tourism Centre where BCN World would be located, it has been calculated that the works could begin before the end of the year, and that the first phase of the complex could open around 2017, with the motive of the Mediterranean Games which will take place in Tarragona.
The first resort will be assigned to Melco, a group specialising in Asian clients, given that it already operates a complex in Macao, and Adserà has planned "synergies" in order to capture visitors between BCN World, Port Aventura and the Ferrari theme park that will coincide in the area.
BCN World estimates that the construction of the complex will create 17,000 jobs, and that once it begins to function, each resort will give work to 5,000 persons directly, which is equivalent to a total of 30,000 jobs when the six resorts are in operation.