The Minister Javier Hurtado has defended in the European Commission and in the European Parliament the need to tighten the transparency and collaboration requirements for tourist rental platforms.
- The European Parliament will debate the European Commission’s proposal regarding the “Regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council on the collection and exchange of data on short-term rentals”
- The Basque Government advocates making it compulsory for platforms to include the registration number of the dwellings and clarifying the sanctioning regime so that the competent administrations, such as the Basque Autonomous Community, can demand that platforms comply with the Regulation.
The Minister for Tourism, Trade and Consumer Affairs, Javier Hurtado, held several meetings yesterday and today at the European Commission and the European Parliament with those responsible for the proposed “Regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council on the collection and exchange of data on short-term rentals”. The Regulation is being discussed today in the Internal Market and Consumer Affairs Committee and is scheduled to be voted on in the European Parliament in September. The delegate of the Basque Government in Brussels, Marta Marín, facilitated the meetings and accompanied the delegation.
The Regulation will be an important step forward in improving control over the activities of tourist accommodation and rooms, as it aims to provide national, regional and local authorities with tools to exchange data with online platforms.
According to the Minister, “the Regulation is an opportunity not to be missed to require platforms to include the registration number of the accommodation on a mandatory basis. The impunity of many accommodation providers who are acting clandestinely is due to the lack of collaboration and transparency of the platforms with the local authorities. The control of clandestine activity is difficult without the collaboration of these platforms and from the Basque Country we will continue to insist that it is absolutely necessary to influence this in this European regulation”.
For this reason, the Minister defended the position and interests of the Basque Country with regard to this Regulation, a position that was already specified by the Basque Government in the amendments to the Opinion issued by the Committee of the Regions in March.
The Minister explained to the European officials the problems faced by the Basque Country, as well as other Autonomous Communities and regions, when it comes to detecting and being able to sanction non-compliance related to clandestine tourist accommodation. The lack of transparency and information on the platforms, as well as the failure to include the registration number of the properties, makes it difficult to locate them and limits the ability to sanction the hosts, who are the ones marketing them.
For this reason, it requests that platforms be obliged to include their registration number. In this regard, the Basque Government requests clarification of the penalty system so that the competent administrations, such as the Basque Autonomous Community, can require platforms to comply with the Regulation. Likewise, and given the urgent needs of many municipalities and regions, it requests that the deadline for the regulation to come into force should not exceed 6 months, instead of the proposed 24 months.
To this end, he will meet in the European Parliament with MEP Kim Van Sparrentak, who is responsible for defending the European Parliament’s report on the proposed European Regulation.
He will also hold a meeting at the European Commission with the Deputy Director General of the Directorate General for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs, Hubert Gambs, who is responsible for the text of the Short Term Rental Regulation.
Following these meetings, the Minister will meet with several MEPs who are members of the Parliamentary Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Affairs, IMCO, where the Regulation will be discussed.
Finally, the Minister also held a meeting with Cristina Nuñez, Secretary General of the European network NECSTOUR/Network of European Regions for Sustainable and Competitive Tourism, of which the Basque Tourism Agency, Basquetour, is a member.