Sustainable Tourism Law

Sustainability and social responsibility in the regulation and management of collaborative hosting in big cities. Overview of the legal framework for the housing for tourism use Pilar Juana García Saura Department of Administrative Law University of Murcia I. INTRODUCTION The tourism sector in Spain has experienced a convulsive change, going from a very regulated market where the public administration plays a determining role regarding consumer protection, environment and, in the end, public interest 1 , to the present situation where collaborative (in principle) web platforms have appeared and ‘cannibalised’ the market 2, carrying out their activity in an unregulated space that follows the concept of service provision by electronic means. Fromthis perspective, the intermediation service providedby collaborative platforms can be considered an information society service that follows the Directive 2015/1535/EU: “any Information Society service, that is to say, any service normally provided for remuneration, at a distance, by electronic means and at the individual request of a recipient of services.” This category was incorporated in Spanish law by Law 34/2002 on Information Society Services 3 . 1 We cannot forget that the first regulations on tourist accommodations date from the 1970s when it was necessary the adoption of an interventionist role of the administration in order to “protect” and “take care of” this emerging industry in Spain (years of the tourist boom). Statute of Tourism Businesses and Private Activities, Decree 231/1965, of 14 January, Boletín Oficial del Estado(BOE, Spanish State Official Gazette ) n0. 44, 20 feb. 1965. 2 A study commissioned by the Barcelona City Council in 2016 quantifies, for the first time, the extent of the phenomenon in 15,881 tourist apartments: 9,606 with license and the rest 6,275 without license; 39.5% of the offer is illegal. Likewise, the study El Turismo Colaborativo. Contexto Internacional y Nacional makes a comparison of hotel beds per autonomous community that allows the conclusion that, on average, the offer of p2p accommodation in Spain is around 25% of the total places (hotels + p2p accommodation). The document can be accessed in the web 3 This is stated in the Sentencing 309/2016, of 29 November, of the Administrative Court No. 11 of Barcelona: “Airbnb is an intermediary, not as tourist service, but as the developer of a technological or computer process of approaching between client -user- and the person willing to temporarily assign his or her home for a price”.