Besides it’s beautiful face, cuisine and Mediterranean Sea and Island Lifestyle which only speaks for themselves, Malta has seen an enormous transformation within its business sector, a transformation that happened strategically, over a number of decades. Drawing upon its experience as an island economy that lived through turmoil and wars, the country has adopted a dynamic and resourceful attitude towards increasing and highlighting its potential nationally, around Europe and on an international level.
Business in Malta is variegated, thriving and profitable. It has not been easy to achieve this, considering the economic crises that have hit many other countries in the past years. The island has managed to tide its way over the difficulties and move on. There are several key factors which have contributed to this positive situation.
One aspect has been its connectivity, chiefly aimed at up keeping Malta's own tourism industry, but not only. Following the establishment of the national airline Air Malta, the country has continued to welcome varied airlines, also economy flights, in order to increase tourism and attract a wider audience of visitors and investors. Over four million passengers walked in through the gates at the Malta International Airport during 2015, and MIA has recently announced that more new airlines will continue to offer their services, so that some 30 different airlines are now passing through.
Connectivity also exists via sea, whereby sea transport is constantly on the go both for passengers and for cargo, connecting Malta to southern Europe via Sicily and Italy as well as to north Africa. Consider that the thriving Freeport currently handles cargo from a total in excess of 18000 TEU vessels. One must not forget the healthy Grand Harbour and other port areas which bring in a substantial and steady number of ocean liners, luxury yachts and other leisure sea vessels, bringing in a steady flow of tourists throughout the year.
There is technical, corporate and financial assistance that starts at the base of every new business, aiding investors through the right channels. One such source of assistance comes from the Malta Enterprise, a government agency which creates programmes targeting new set-ups, young businesses, small to medium-sized companies. Foreign companies have been attracted to the extremely high level of IT competence among local experts so that different industries are now healthily in business from a Maltese base.
One such phenomenal investment has materialised via the i-Gaming industry which employs not only locals with IT and foreign language competences, but also a good number of foreigners who have re-located here to find employment in the sector. Incidentally i-Gaming corporations are further tantalised by attractive tax benefits and if they come highly qualified, their empoyees' tax advantages are bound to increase. Other good track records are kept by financial companies, foreign banks, investment and insurance consultants.
Malta’s position as an EU member state, and its financial services, presents a compelling proposition for international financial services organisations planning to set up or relocate their operations into Europe. The growth of Malta as an international financial services domicile has so far been spearheaded by very strong growth registered in the investment funds and insurance sectors. Other sectors have also enjoyed very strong growth such as the trusts, banking and wealth management sectors.
Malta has one of the finest legal and regulatory bodies which Framework is managed by the Malta Financial Services authority. Malta’s timezone is also one that is convenient for doing business whereas it’s geographical locations is no further than three to four ours to main land Europe.
The Corporate tax set up is that of 35% which can be reduced to between 0-5%. Rates can be refunded due to various schemes related to shareholders not being a tax resident of Malta whereas the country has double tax treaty agreements with over 70 States.
In Malta, there are also all the major auditing firms, which major branches located on the Islands.
With a relatively low cost of living, a safe ambience to live in, a moderate and amicable climate, foreigners who decide to relocate, work and invest locally find other attractive benefits to enjoy. The cost of residential rentals varies according to location and can accommodate pretty much any kind of taste, style or budget. Rental rates are still relatively low for such a cosmopolitan Island. Office spaces and related services are also plentiful and found all over Malta and Gozo.
The workforce of Malta is also educated, very much dedicated and may even be relatively cheaper thus providing value for money and major cost savings of relocation a full compliment of expatriates. Many companies employ expatriates which have expertise and as they grow, train locals and offer these similar jobs at a lower cost to the Maltese.
Highly Qualified Persons within the The Financial, e-Gaming, Aviation and other sectors benefit from a flat rate of 15%, as long as they fall within what they call “eligible office” and their annual income is that of €75, 000 up to a maximum of €5, 000, 000. No tax will be applied thereafter.
The Maltese Islands has never been in a better position to accommodate anyone’s desire to relocate to Malta. There are all the different services one could imagine that will make moving to Malta a smooth process, including real estate agencies, concierge services, accountancy and audit firms as well as others not to mention the fact that the country has the necessary competent authorities of a respectable and credible jurisdiction.