FURIOUS health minister Ana Mató has hit back at Madrid regional president Esperanza Aguirre after she said the anti-smoking law would ‘have to change’ once Eurovegas is set up in Spain.
“Oh, no it won’t,” stormed Mató yesterday.
“Smoking is bad for health, and the law will remain.”
The health minister added: “What is true, and what I have always said, is that I am prepared to listen to all arguments presented to me on the subject.
“But at the end of the day, the law will not change.”
Aguirre said the ban on smoking in public places and enclosed areas would ‘evidently’ need to be amended in her regions if tycoons Sheldon Adelson and his right-hand man, Mike Leven, from Las Vegas Sands, chose the Spanish capital for their casino city.
She could face opposition from Spain’s health department, though, who have warned her that she ‘will not break the rules’.
Barcelona, the other Eurovegas candidate, says it is prepared to host the complex, ‘but not at any price’, according to the city’s mayor, Xavier Trias.
“We are very interested, but not at all costs – not if it will involve anything that could ruin the image we want to keep of our city, that of culture, knowledge, creativity, innovation and well-being.”
Las Vegas Sands has said Spain will be the venue for Eurovegas, the only question being whether it will choose Barcelona or Madrid.