Sustainable economic growth on government agenda
Malta’s strong economic performance has been lauded over and again by various international credit rating agencies, the IMF, and the European Commission and is expected to continue growing at significant rates during the coming years. The Government’s strategy in bringing about this growth and plans for 2018 were discussed during a business breakfast held by the Ministry for the Economy, Investment and Small Business together with Malta Enterprise (ME). The discussion mainly revolved around the question ‘Should Malta attract further FDI?’ and what challenges does the nation face that may hinder growth and which of these challenges were instigated by such growth?
The UNCTAD World Investment report (2017) showed that global FDI flows in 2016 decreased by circa 2.0%, with only a mild recovery expected for 2017-2018. Despite this, Malta Enterprise in 2016 captured a fair share of FDI, concentrating on a smaller number of investments – but ones adding high value.
Key findings pertaining to ME’s performance for the period 2013-2016 and provisional data for 2017 demonstrated that Malta remains a competitive location for high value added and capital-intensive operations. The results also show that FDIs operating in Malta for a number of years are continuously expanding their operations. These include companies in precision engineering and electronics as well as those operating in the maintenance, repair, and overhaul of aircrafts. Practically all large players have registered growth, demonstrating the importance ME places on helping existing industries – both foreign and local – to grow.
The tables below illustrate the support that was granted by Malta Enterprise in favour of local and foreign investors operating in eligible sectors and projects approved by ME;
|Support Measure||Number of Beneficiaries|
|Support on Investment||1076||1161||1418||1778||5,433|
|Business Development, R&D&I||57||76||55||110||298|
Table 1.1 – Malta Enterprise Support Measures by year
Table 1.2 – Malta Enterprise approved projects by year
It is evident that Malta Enterprise through its operations and support measures has a great influence on various economic sectors and the local economy
In light of these results, Malta Enterprise will continue to work to attract new and foreign direct investment in the target sectors, however its priorities also involve retaining existing foreign direct investment in Malta and helping it to grow further. Simultaneously, Malta Enterprise will also continue to support local investors to ensure that they maximise growth and encourage them to explore markets beyond our shores.
“The strategy we are adopting across the board is to continue to focus on selected industrial niches that can add value to the Maltese economy. Malta Enterprise carries out its micro targeting using a mix of research, market intelligence and experience of existing industries to devise an operational strategy that ensures to attract new niches that can be nourished, sustained and grow in the future. At the same time growth in sectors that are doing well is encouraged and supported”, said Minister Cardona in reaction to these findings.
Source: Press Release issued by the Ministry for the Economy, Investment and Small Business