Spanish restaurant launches 'anti-crisis' lunch menu

19:12, 28 October 2008
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A restaurant in Gijon in northern Spain has started offering a lunch time "anti-crisis" menu for just one euro to help its customers in the industrial port face up to the sharp economic slowdown, AFP reported.

"We don`t make money but we are not losing money either," one of the managers of Dario`s restaurant, Emilia Jimenez, told Spanish media, adding that business on weekends makes up for its budget-priced Thursday lunches.

The restaurant launched the offer earlier this month to try to attract customers at a time when consumer spending is contracting sharply in Spain, which is going through an abrupt economic slowdown.

Waiting times for a seat were long on Thursday as the 49-seat establishment served nearly 200 people.

For one euro (1.26 dollars) customers were served seafood soup, ribs with rice, chicken or anchovies with salad, along with bread, a drink and dessert.

Lunch time menus in Spain usually cost around 10 euros.

Spain is experiencing a rapid rise in unemployment as its economy, which just last year was one of the fastest-growing in the developed world, lurches towards a recession due to the end of a decade-long property boom.

The country`s unemployment rate rose to 11.3 percent in the third quarter, its highest level in more than four years and the highest rate in the 27-member European Union, from 10.4 percent in the second quarter.

The Washington-based International Monetary Fund predicts Spain`s unemployment rate will hit 14.7 percent next year while the economy will shrink by 0.2 percent that year. Spain`s economy expanded by 3.7 percent last year.


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