Malta u l-politika

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Manifest Elettorali PL 2013

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http://www.maltapolitics.com/Manifest Elettorali PL 2013.pdf

X'qalu dwar il-proposti tal-Partit Laburista

The Labour draft plan on education is a well-researched and detailed report that will serve as a solid basis for discussion, Federation of Industry (FOI) president Adrian Bajada told Labour party officials yesterday. Mr. Bajada said he was satisfied that the report was very relevant to the future improvement of the educational system within the context of the present Maltese economic reality. He said that education should not be static but an ever-changing process that was linked to the economy. He spoke about lifelong learning, adding that the party’s plan was aimed at improving the present system. The Malta Independent 13.7.2006

 

The Malta Union of Midwives and Nurses (MUMN) has said it is very happy that the Malta Labour Party has decided that Maltese nurses should be awarded a warrant in order to practice their profession. The MUMN said that since its inception it had argued that the nursing profession should have the same status as other professions. The union said that, in its draft health policy, the MLP acknowledged the nursing profession’s importance, and said that, once in government, it would grant warrants to nurses. The MUMN said it was disappointed that the present government had not taken a decision on the matter.

The Malta Independent 27.7.2006

 

The five central aims of the report are commendable, since they do link the concept of solidarity and a just distribution of income and wealth with that of productivity. – Reaction of the Malta Employers’ Association to the Malta Labour Party’s Document: Towards an Economic and Social Regeneration Plan

(mill-website tal-Assocjazzjoni ta’ min ihaddem)

http://www.maltaemployers.com/Default.aspx?tabid=827

 

Federation of Industry president Anton Borg yesterday described the Malta Labour Party's document on social and economic regeneration as a very commendable one.

The Times 1.3.2005

 

The Labour Party's policy document on social and economic regeneration contained a lot of good proposals.

John Bencini, MUT president

The Times 3.3.2005

 

The president of the Malta Hotels and Restaurants Association said yesterday that although it would be hard not to agree with the Labour Party's proposals in its plan for economic regeneration one would have to see how it would work out in practice.

The Times 27.10.2004

 

There is nothing wrong with the proposal made in the party's draft plan for the setting up of a permanent task force to propose improvements in the incentives given for the promotion of new investment. If the legislation that is meant to promote new investment needs reform, it should be taken in hand without undue delay as the competition for new investment is getting fiercer all the time.

The Times 10.5.2006

 

Speaking on behalf of the (Gozo Tourism) association, Victor Borg said never before had the association come across such a detailed plan on Gozo as that issued by the MLP. Another representative, Joe Muscat, remarked that the plan contained many proposals which would give Gozo that push forward it needed.

The Times 3.6.2006

 

In a meeting held between the General Retailers and Traders Union (GRTU) and the Malta Labour Party (MLP), the President of the Pharmaceutical Section within the GRTU, Mario Debono, stated that the Union concurs with the majority of the proposals brought forward by the MLP in its plan for the health sector titled “Poplu b'sahhtu Pajjiz b'sahhtu”.

di-ve news, June 13 2006 2010CEST

 

The Ombudsman, Chief Justice Emeritus Dr. Joseph Said Pullicino on Tuesday… said that the MLP's vision for the public sector has some valid principles that should be the target of any administration.

di-ve news, August 22, 2006 1530CEST

 

The Chamber of Architects has praised the MLP's proposals for improving the Public Sector. Reacting to a press statement released by the MLP about the Sector in question, the Chamber of Architects said that it feels that change should be not simply of a cosmetic nature but should result in better overall efficiency and quality. President of the Chamber David Pace and delegates met with the MLP on Wednesday morning to further discuss the matter.

(di-ve news) - August 30, 2006 - 1700CEST

 

Mr (Ray) Bondin (coordinator of the rehabilitation projects at Mdina, Valletta and Cottonera) was speaking at a consultation meeting with representatives of the Labour Party, and said that the party’s vision about the historical environment looked positively and organisationally at the future.

The Malta Independent 5.5.2007

 

The Malta Labour Party has just unveiled a “vision statement” containing 34 proposals for improvements in the sports sector and 36 in the case of culture. … this is a commendable initiative … one of the key recommendations is that the national minimum curriculum should be amended to reflect better the importance physical education and sports should be given in schools. This is absolutely right because sport is central to the ethos and life skills imparted to children in the best of our schools. … The 36 proposals on culture are similarly aspirational and commendable … The proposal for artists to be recognised as full-timers and to get an exemption on the payment of national insurance contributions for the first year after opening their own studios is also praiseworthy.

Editorjal, The Times 28.6.2007

 

Undoubtedly, the Labour publication contains many praiseworthy objectives and proposals …

Editorjal, The Sunday Times 5.8.2007

 

Nature Trust has expressed its satisfaction over the MLP statement that the party will do anything within the law and Mepa regulations to try and reverse the Ramla permit.

The Times 10.8.2007

 

The Malta Labour Party while in opposition has worked actively to produce the necessary policy documents to put in motion if elected.

Gejtu Vella, UHM Secretary General, The Times 17.8.2007

 

Labour's proposal to give the chairman of the Malta Council for Economic and Social Development the rank of a minister, allowing him to attend certain Cabinet meetings, was received well by the social partners. The director-general of the Malta Employer's Association, Joe Farrugia, said the proposal should certainly not be written off as being out of hand. “We obviously still have to discuss it but it's an interesting proposal.” His comment echoes that of other representatives of constituted bodies who spoke to The Times. Vince Farrugia, director-general of the Chamber for Small and Medium Enterprises - GRTU said: “I think it is very positive that Labour has taken the plunge and actually proposed something to make the MCESD more effective. It doesn't mean we will be agreeing with the proposal but it's definitively something to be considered”.

The Times 24.8.2007

 

MIDI Consortium chairman Albert Mizzi said that plans such as those on which the Labour Party was working were important and required that all entities join forces to take the necessary decisions with regard to developing the Grand Harbour area.

The Malta Independent 1.9.2007

 

The Labour Party has had a meeting with Malta Shipping, the towing company, to discuss its regional development plan for Grand Harbour. Company director Joseph Caruana said that … it was important for a party like the MLP to look into the needs of companies operating from the port.

The Malta Independent 13.9.2007

 

The Voice of the Left-Zminijietna - has welcomed the MLP proposals regarding housing and MCESD issues … Zminijietna welcomes the proposed Labour incentives for housing to subsidise first-time house purchases through a universal scheme and to extend loan repayment period to families of workers facing redundancies. Zminijietna also considers as fair the creation of a social fund from the refunding of grants and interest, once the couple sells its first property. The Voice of the Left considers that Labour's proposals need also to address the problem regarding property speculation and the rampant increase in property prices.

The Times 15.9.2007

 

The MLP's publication of its approved policy documents is a fruitful exercise. It permits a public discussion keeping an overall view of its different sectoral policies. In particular it permits placing environmental policies in context.

Carmel Cacopardo, The Times 22.9.2007

 

The Malta Chamber of Planners wholeheartedly welcomes the widely-publicised vision for the regeneration of the Grand Harbour area presented by the Government and the Labour Party.

The Sunday Times 28.10.2007

 

Alfred Sant has once again set the country’s agenda by proposing that all overtime should be made tax-free. … Sant’s proposal already enjoys the qualified support of both major trade unions, the Union Haddiema Maqghudin (UHM) and the General Workers’ Union (GWU), as well as the Malta Chamber of SMEs (GRTU).

MaltaToday on Sunday 28.10.2007

 

Kif mistenni l-maġġoranza tan-nies taqbel mal-proposta tal-MLP li jneħħi t-taxxa fuq is-sahra iżda jidher li għad hemm dubju fost l-elettorat dwar kemm din il-proposta tistax titwettaq. Stħarriġ tal-gazzetta Illum juri li maġġoranza kbira ta’ 59 fil-mija jaqblu mal-proposta Laburista li tispiċċa t-taxxa fuq is-sahra. Huma biss 21 fil-mija li ma jaqblux. Bla dubju, kull proposta li tħalli iktar flus fil-but qed tinżel għasel ma’ l-elettorat li qed jara l-ħajja togħla minn jum għal jum. Saħansitra 29 fil-mija ta’dawk li beħsiebhom jivvutaw lill-Partit Nazzjonalista wasslu biex jaqblu ma’ din il-proposta. L-appoġġ fost l-indeċiżi jitla’ għal 60 fil-mija.

ILLUM 2.12.2007

 

The leader of the Party of European Socialists, Poul Nyrup Rasmussen, yesterday said the PES endorses Labour's reform plan, pledging the group's support for the MLP's electoral bid. … Labour's plan for economic reform is sound and conforms with the eurozone rules, he said, pointing out that the Maastricht rules allow for certain flexibility to be able to implement the sort of reform being projected by Labour.

The Times 24.1.2008

 

Labour's decision to set up a business forum marks an interesting turning point in the party's history. …  the party's move to set up the business forum is a step in the right direction.

Editorjal, The Times 17.2.2010

 

Prof. (Peter) Serracino Inglott weighed in, saying he agreed with radical reforms to the Constitution – what the Labour Party has been referring to as the founding of a Second Republic. “Incidentally, I am in favour of this,” he said. “If it were up to me we would switch to a Presidential system, we would set up the second chamber (in the House of Representatives), we would change the Commission for the Administration of Justice because it is evidently not working... I find it surprising that we haven’t seriously thought of tackling it so far.”

The Sunday Times 18.12.2011

 

Labour have a point in demanding greater information as to how the government plans to cut €40 million in this year’s budget …– Editorjal The Times 24.3.2012

 

While Labour has said that it sees the idea of raising the minimum wage positively, on the other hand it insists that any such action would have to be preceded by a series of other measures. The party spokesman said: “This is why we consider our pledge to reduce electricity bills to be a policy of major economic and social importance.” The party believes that this course of action will reduce cost pressures on the private sector, water down inflation and allow families to better cope with the cost of living. Surely no one can argue with the validity of the argument. - Editorjal, The Times 16.4.2012

 

Labour has pledged to remove bendy-buses from problematic routes and has not ruled out taking them off Malta’s roads altogether.

The Times 11.10.2012

 

The Opposition is quite right in objecting to the prospect, as proposed in the government’s IVF Bill that couples seeking to undergo IVF are to appear before a board that would judge their eligibility for the treatment. ... The Opposition has used the phrase ‘Big Brother’ in this context and although the invocation is a little sensationalistic, it is fitting. ... this is tantamount to a modern day inquisition and if this process does see the light of day, we might suggest that such hearings are carried out at a certain address in Vittoriosa where similar tortuous hearings were held once upon a time. The concept was subsequently objected to by PL MP Owen Bonnici, among others, who quite rightly described the notion as ‘terrifying’. ... The mere suggestion of couples need to justify themselves is ludicrous and, as the Opposition has put it, unacceptable. ... The Opposition is quite right on this, and with the Bill going into its second reading tomorrow, the debate is due to gather steam. The amendments being promised by the Opposition, and possibly by the House’s independent MP, in this respect and others related to the Bill will be very interesting indeed.

Editorjal, The Malta Independent on Sunday 11.11.2012

 

The Labour Party has said that it would keep the Budget 2013 measures - a measure which should give certainty to European partners and investors about Malta's commitment to fiscal consolidation.

Fitch 11.12.2012

maltatoday.com.mt Wednesday 12 December 2012 - 08:24

 

The Labour (energy) proposal is certainly not a gimmick and it is interesting.

Michael Falzon (Ex Minister Nazzjonalista)

The Times 10.1.2013 

 

Those who thought Labour would fall flat on its face when it came to presenting this proposal were probably disappointed. Far from the flimsy plan many had expected, what the PL shared with the public yesterday was a professionally-prepared and detailed exposition. In engaging a highly reputable consultant company that was also recently used by the Government for the Delimara power station extension, DNV Kema, the PL immediately added a stamp of credibility to the technical side of its proposal: which is to build a gas-fired power station to replace the controversial heavy fuel burners Malta currently relies upon.

Editorjal, The Times 9.1.2013

 

The matter of the honorarium was taken to the House Business Committee where Labour proposed the setting up of a permanent commission to decide on all salaries, including those of the President, the Prime Minister, the Opposition leader, ministers and parliamentary secretaries. The proposal makes a lot of sense but no progress was made.

Editorjal The Times 10.5.2011

 

The 23 proposals presented by Labour leader Joseph Muscat at a conference on the cost of living was drafted, it would be politically foolish to dismiss out of hand all the points he raised. True, some of his proposals sound far too rhetorical in nature and lack substance but a number of the points he made, and which have been raised many times by others before, are worth being acted upon without further delay.

Editorjal, The Times 25.7.2009

 

The fact that the Labour Party kept to its promise to publish its proposals of how much a future Labour government will reduce electricity tariffs is a key message that Labour seems to express a strong determination to tackle the issue of the price of energy as one of its highest political agendas. The declaration that Joseph Muscat will take personal charge of these proposals, as well as the appointment of a minister dedicated to energy, are clear signs of the resolve that Labour strives to achieve the ambitious goals it has now set out to deliver. The involvement of the private sector in the generation of energy is another positive proposal as I truly believe that if public private partnerships are structured in a correct and balanced manner, they will provide a win-win situation for both the government and the private sector. I have witnessed the success of PPPs at close quarter in the elderly sector in Malta and have seen how both the government and the private sector have benefited in delivering services faster by increasing operating efficiencies, as well as reducing government costs and creating jobs in the private sector. It is also positive that solar energy has been identified to play a key role in the renewable energy mix for Malta instead of wind, under Labour’s plans. For the last three years I have worked with a multinational solar company developing, building and operating solar plants across Europe and have seen the benefits solar can bring in the promoting a decentralised electricity distribution network, bringing the generation of electricity closer to consumers.

Alexander Tranter (former chairman of Enemalta Corporation)

The Sunday Times 13.1.2013

 

Il-proposti tal-PL dwar l-energija digà qeghdin ihallu effett pozittiv ghax qeghdin ipoggu fuq il-quccata tal-agenda politika taghna l-aktar element kritiku ghall-ekonomija taghna - l-energija. Il-vizjoni proposta tidhol tajjeb f'certu dettall f'materji bhal ‘generation mix', jigifieri li ma tiddependix minn sors wiehed ta' fjuwil ghall-generazzjoni, ‘security of supply'- li jkollok dejjem assigurat provvista tal-energija, efficjenza tal-generazzjoni, is-sostenibbiltà tal-politika tal-energija kollha kemm hi. L-idea ta' shubija mas-settur privat ghall-generazzjoni tal-elettriku hija tajba ghax tnehhi l-piz tal-investiment ta' parti sostanzjali tal-impjanti necessarji minn fuq it-tax payer Malti u tghaddieha lill-privat. Bhala kumpens l-investitur privat jinghata s-sigurtà li l-Gvern jixtri minn ghandu provvista ta' energija ghal numru ta' snin bi prezz fiss. Ghalija dan hu kuncett innovattiv ghal Malta u li jista' jintlahaq ("achievable"). Il-privat ser ikun xprunat li jinnegozja l-ahjar prezzijiet kummercjali ghall-fjuwils li jkun se juza u li jzomm l-impjant tieghu jopera fuq l-oghla efficjenza. Dan minnu nnifsu jkun assigurazzjoni ta' prezzijiet li jibqghu baxxi.

Jesmond Mugliett ex Ministru Nazzjonalista

kulhadd.com Saturday, 12 January 2013 21:16

 

Opposition leader Joseph Muscat yesterday announced that a Labour government would revise the current parliamentary situation and would tie politicians’ honoraria with their attendance in parliament. … the proposal to tie MP’s honoraria to attendance – is doable, positive and gives a sense of social justice…. So yes, this is a valid, and good proposal. … Therefore the PL proposal makes sense and it is a welcome one.

Editorjal, The Malta Independent 15.1.2013

 

Parliamentary attendance, according to the Opposition’s suggestion, would also be made public online – another excellent idea.

Editorjal, The Malta Independent 17.1.2013

 

The Labour Party’s proposals for sweeping reforms in the justice system are most welcome, the problems plaguing the delivery of justice in this country have been with us for decades now and it is high time that matters are addressed and addressed properly. … One novel concepts was that related to sending off an SMS or an email to people whose court cases have been postponed for one reason or another, instead of forcing people to trek into Valletta, many missing at least a morning of work in the process, only to find that their case has been postponed. Another new concept was the proposal to involve Parliament in the appointment of judges and magistrates, with a view to creating a better system of checks and balances. Also novel is the proposal to remove the statute of limitations, in other words time barring, when it comes to cases of political corruption – a grand gesture but one that will undoubtedly have repercussions on other crimes that carry statutes of limitations.  How, for example, could it be justified if time barring is still to be applied to cases of sexual abuse or even murder?  The Labour Party’s commitment to implement, at long last, a Whistleblowers Act is also most welcome. … Labour should be praised for raising the issues.

Editorjal, The Malta Independent 24.1.2013

 

The Labour Party has proposed delivering medicines to people who are too old and frail to go and get them themselves. This is also being highlighted on the billboards. In itself, the idea is praise-worthy as it tries to remove the difficulties the old and infirm face especially when they live alone and have no one to go running errands for them.

Editorjal, The Malta Independent 13.2.2013

 

The Labour Party has said it will enact a Whistleblower Act should it be elected and it will legislate to remove time barring from political corruption cases. These are both positive suggestions and the PN has vowed to do the same should it win the election, even though these proposals are absent from the Nationalist Party’s electoral programme. … Labour has pledged to reform the Broadcasting Authority, which if properly implemented can be a step in the right direction.

Editorjal, The Times 19.2.2013

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Il-Poplu jemmen lil Joseph Muscat

1. Joseph Muscat jghid li l-gid li jiftahar bih Lawrence Gonzi mhux qieghed jinhass mill-poplu.

2. Il-PN jghid li mhux vera anzi jghid li l-PL maqtugh mir-realta'.

3. The Times tistaqsi jekk in-nies hux qeghdin ihossu it-titjib ekonomiku li jiftahar bih il-PN.

4. Ir-risposta tal-poplu.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Whud mill-proposti ta' Joseph Muscat

Labour Party leader Joseph Muscat yesterday announced 15 measures against corruption, which the party will be implementing once in government.

The Malta Independent 14.5.2010

 

Opposition leader Joseph Muscat said yesterday that he had given 51 sustainable and realistic pledges and proposals to the 10 questions which the Prime Minister had asked him to address last Sunday. Lawrence Gonzi, he said, was asking questions while the Opposition was providing solutions which would harness everybody’s talents and abilities. In his official answer to the Budget Speech, Dr Muscat said more were to come because the solution to Malta’s problems was not to spend more but to spend judiciously. The pledges would lead to economic growth, confidence, good governance and stability. During the last three years, the opposition had offered 141 proposals, which the government completely ignored. These included 15 suggestions on energy, 17 on immigration, 23 on the cost of living and 10 on assistance to families and business.

The Times 22.11.2011

 

The 23 proposals presented by Labour leader Joseph Muscat at a conference on the cost of living was drafted, it would be politically foolish to dismiss out of hand all the points he raised.

Editorjal, The Times 25.7.200

 

At a Labour party conference held today at the Mediterranean Conference Centre in Valletta, Opposition leader Joseph Muscat announced two new proposals a new Labour government would implement if elected. Muscat said Labour is committed to commission a social impact assessment on all major economic decisions once it is in government, and new trusts for disabled people and their parents to safeguard the future of disabled children.

maltatoday.com Friday 1 June 2012 - 20:49

 

The Labour Party declared that a new government will give the right to 16-year-olds to vote, as a first step, in the local council elections.

maltastar.com 16 Oct 2012, 16:56

 

In his speech on the Budget for 2012, the Leader of the Opposition outlined a list of proposals a Labour government would implement if given the mandate to serve the country at the next general election. Joseph Muscat’s proposals are:

 

•reversing the decision to increase the salaries of the PM and Ministers by 500 euros

•reducing energy bills in a realistic and sustainable way

•strengthening stipends so all students benefit

•putting young people’s needs before red tape

•operating the Delimara power station extension on gas instead of heavy fuel oil as it is cleaner and cheaper

•reducing waiting list times for patients and where necessary setting up public-private partnerships to do so

•leaving the retirement age as is

•increasing maternity leave by four weeks

•incentivising mothers enter or return to the labour market

•improving parental leave for fathers and bringing in more flexibility

•reorganizing energy provision in a way to make one person accountable to decisions taken in this area

•proceeding with the interconnector project to provide cheaper energy for families and businesses

•creating a business-friendly environment

•assisting all businesses to survive and thrive

•giving the same red carpet treatment to Maltese, Gozitans as well as foreign investors

•introducing the polluter pays principle gradually

•supporting the self employed and the small self employed to thrive

•promoting  industry as a key motor of our economy

•reducing the interest rates levied on VAT arrears to fair and realistic levels

•ensuring that national projects are of the highest standards possible

•facilitating mergers and acquisitions between companies and reducing the expenses involved

•giving legal recognition to rights and responsibilities of all cohabiting couples

•introduce  civil union partnerships for same sex couples

•bringing in an IVF law to support couples and practitioners

•entitling all  members of civil protection police and army to join a union

•not granting public contracts to private companies that do not respect workers’ rights and do not give them a decent wage

•setting up an independent commission made up of the Ombudsman, the Electoral Commission and the Auditor General to decide on salaries of Prime Minister, Ministers and political office holders

•sustaining pensions with economic growth

•incentivising third pillar pensions as a choice

•addressing the needs of pensioners from the army and former work corps that have been left behind

•tackling innovatively the health problems of an ageing society

•reducing the number of early school leavers

•supporting the setting up of a second University that incorporates the achievements of MCAST and ITS and engaging foreign educational institutions

•giving  Air Malta a long term sustainable vision

•creating synergy between the tourism sector and Air Malta

•enabling tourism to regain its central role as the main pillar of our economy

•removing the unnecessary burdens on the tourist product so key operators and government can once again focus on investing in quality

•solving the current problems around traffic management and its effect on consumers, businesses and workers

•being frank and open with developers and environmentalists alike and stop wasting developers’ time on projects which are not priorities, while not hiding behind bureaucracy when giving clear answers to environmentalists

•actively supporting the green economy and the jobs that it can create

•creating new opportunities for Gozo and for  Gozitans making Gozo one of the motors of our economy

•granting the Gozitan Chamber of Commerce and the Forum Unions Maltin the right to sit on the MCESD

•giving agriculture and fisheries their rightful importance

•bringing all our laws in line with our Constitution and human rights

•ensuring a better and more prompt service for our citizens in our courts

•equipping the Family Court with the necessary resources so that it can provide a much better service for everyone in general and children in particular

•ensuring law and order in entertainment areas

•completing the new MCAST campus on time

•making local councils serve families instead of bureaucracy

•stopping the current racket in the provision of warden services and making it efficient,  fair and accountable

•providing new parking facilities for residents, consumers and businesses

 

maltastar.com Thursday, 24 Nov 2011, 07:07

 

 

A new Labour government will introduce a Whistleblower act and protect whoever will unveil political corruption, Labour leader Joseph Muscat said. Speaking in Qormi on Saturday evening, Muscat said that a new Labour government will not lay the BWSC saga to rest and promised that the whistleblower act will be one of the first laws a new Labour government will enact. "Who is ready to unveil political corruption under a new governmnet will be treated like they would be in other countries, they will be protected and the wrongdoers will have to pay for their deeds," Muscat said.

maltatoday.com.mt Saturday 27 October 2012 - 18:23

 

Labour yesterday unveiled a detailed €370 million plan to convert the Delimara power station to a gas-fired plant, which it says will lead to an average 25 per cent reduction in utility bills. Launched on the second official day of the electoral campaign, Labour announced that it would complete the project within a two-year timeframe and effect savings for private households next year. Meanwhile, water bills would be reduced by five per cent through savings made from reduced electricity bills. Addressing a two-hour press conference at the PL headquarters in Ħamrun, Joseph Muscat said that as Prime Minister he would personally take charge of the project’s implementation along with an energy minister. The plan proposes to replace the Delimara power station with a 200MW gas-fired plant costing €166 million. In addition to this, a gas handling facility would be built at a cost of €142 million while the Delimara extension, built by Danish company BWSC and which started operating in December, will also be converted to run on gas at a cost of €68 million. Under Labour’s proposal, the new plant will be financed and run by the private sector after a public call for expression of interest, while the BWSC extension will remain the property of Enemalta. A Labour government would enter into a 10-year fixed-term electricity contract with the company chosen to build the new plant, during which Enemalta will buy the electricity produced. This agreement, according to the PL model, will enable the private company to recoup its investment and make a profit while electricity will still be supplied at a unit cost that is much lower than today. Dr Muscat said there was “strong interest” from the private sector in the proposal, insisting it was a safe investment because Enemalta would buy the electricity generated by the proposed plant. However, he did not provide further details. Asked whether Labour had a fall back position if private investors snubbed the plan, Dr Muscat said the alternative was doing nothing and allowing water and electricity tariffs to increase. “This is not an option,” he insisted. Dr Muscat denied the Labour Party had any companies in mind. “This is not a done deal. This is not a proposal belonging to any one company. Any company can come forward to submit its proposal,” he said. Speaking at the end of the presentation, which included an explanation by a consultant from Dutch energy company Kema that was commissioned by Labour to cost the different models available to supply gas to the island and build the new plant, Dr Muscat said the plan provided the country with a new direction in the energy sector. He said a new Labour Government would “hit the ground running” and issue an expression of interest by April, asking private investors to come forward. Dr Muscat said Norwegian company Sargas, which had approached the Government with a plan to build a coal-fired power station with carbon capture technology, had no input in the plan. Utility bills will be cut by 25 per cent, says PL “Sargas, like any other company, can compete if it matches the parameters of this strategy, including the use of gas,” he said. Dr Muscat said families will start benefiting from lower bills in the first year since the new Government would negotiate anticipated payments with the private company that would be passed on immediately to consumers. Businesses will benefit from a 25 per cent reduction in bills in 2015 when the new power station is expected to be fully functional. Asked about the ambitious timeframes, Dr Muscat said a Labour government would have the political will to see this project through. “Just as GonziPN had the political will to invest in a new Parliament building and start the construction process almost immediately, a Labour government will have the political will to deliver on its energy plan,” he said. Addressing utility tariffs, which were among the highest in Europe, was important to stimulate economic growth, he added. Dr Muscat insisted a Labour government would honour all Enemalta’s debt commitments and the annual subsidy of around €25 million currently being paid to the corporation will be retained. He said Enemalta would not be privatised and that employees’ jobs were guaranteed. Labour candidate and energy expert Konrad Mizzi started the press conference by going through a detailed power-point presentation, mapping out the current state of affairs and the way forward. Under the heading Affordable, Reliable, Clean Energy For All, the Labour proposal sees the elimination of heavy fuel oil and its replacement with cleaner gas. Dr Mizzi said the Labour Party had asked consultants to study three options for the delivery of gas: a pipeline from Sicily, a liquefied natural gas terminal and regassification plant and an offshore compressed natural gas receiving point. The Labour Party’s preferred option was the LNG terminal, by which gas would be transported by tankers to Delimara. Dr Mizzi explained two large tanks could store a month’s supply of gas. He said that if the gas pipeline became a feasible option with EU funding in the future, it was easily possible to change the method of gas delivery. “However, the LNG terminal will give us a secure, feasible option that enables us to go for gas in a short time span,” Dr Mizzi said. According to the Dutch consultants the cost of electricity generation – including a return on the capital investment – will drop to 9c6 per unit from the 16c it is today. Dr Mizzi said Enemalta would be making savings of €187 million as a result of this. Of these funds, €77 million will be used to reduce the tariffs and €110 million to ensure a fair return for the private company and the repayment of Enemalta’s debts. Asked why the investment could not have been made by the State company, Dr Mizzi said Enemalta was heavily indebted and could not afford the capital expenditure. He pointed out consumers would still buy electricity from Enemalta and it would be responsible for the distribution network. Dr Mizzi said a Labour government aims to close the old Delimara plant by 2015, five years ahead of an EU-imposed deadline. He said the interconnector cable with Sicily, which the current Administration had started working on, would form part of the energy mix. The interconnector will enable the country to buy electricity from the European grid. As for alternative energy, a Labour government’s strategy will emphasise solar power. Dr Mizzi said more details on the party’s plans in this area would be provided in the coming days.

 

Labour’s plan to cut tariffs

• Family bills to be cut by an average of 25 per cent.

• Savings can go up to 35 per cent for those who consume less.

• The heaviest users of electricity will save two per cent.

• Family cuts will come into force in March 2014.

• Businesses’ bills will be slashed by 25 per cent by March 2015.

• Old Delimara power station will close down.

• The tall chimney will be removed.

• Private sector will finance a new 200MW gas-powered unit instead.

• New plant will be run by the private company.

• Enemalta will buy electricity from the private company.

• BWSC plant will be converted to gas and remain in Enemalta’s hands.

• Enemalta will not be privatised and employees’ jobs will be safeguarded.

• Joseph Muscat will personally take charge.

• Liquefied natural gas will be delivered and stored on site at Delimara.

• The cost of every electricity unit will be 9c6 under the new set up.

 

The money involved

 

€25m Government subsidy to Enemalta that will be retained.

€68m Price Enemalta will pay to convert BWSC extension to gas.

€142m Price of the gas infrastructure to be paid by the private investor.

€166m Price of new 200MW power plant to be paid by the private investor.

€187m Savings made as a result of this plan.

The Times 9.1.2013

 

 

Another four new energy proposals were announced by Labour leader Joseph Muscat this morning. Speaking during a visit to Bulebel Industrial Estate, Dr Muscat said Labour had a holistic policy related to solar energy. On being elected to government, it would set up solar parks that could produce 20 megawatts of electricity per year. He said that people who live in apartments and do not have access to roofs would be given the financial and commercial facility to invest in solar panels on top of public buildings. Dr Muscat said that Labour would also set up an Energy Efficiency Support Unit. Through this unit, every household would be given the possibility to have an energy audit, on a voluntary basis. The household would then be given advice on how to reduce consumption. The government would pay for this service. The other proposal involved the setting up of two schemes - one to help families replace old appliances with newer ones and the other for every household to get  a water saving kit. This was already being done in Gozo and was estimated to reduce the water consumption of every household by 25 per cent, Dr Muscat said.

Timesofmalta.com Wednesday, January 9, 2013, 12:08

 

 

Joseph Muscat promised this afternoon that a Labour government would convert the site of the Marsa power station into a recreation and commercial zone. Speaking at the gates of the old power house, the Labour leader said the old Marsa power station would be closed down in the shortest possible time, giving neighbours better air quality. Then the whole site would be returned to the people. Dr Muscat reiterated his party's commitment to safeguard the jobs of all Enemalta workers, adding that although the proposed new gas plant in Delimara would be run by a private operator it would still use Enemalta workers.

timesofmaltacom Wednesday, January 9, 2013, 16:03

 

There will be no increases in the pay packets of ministers and MPs in the next legislature, Joseph Muscat pledged this evening. The Labour leader said an independent commission would still be set up to analyse the pay packets of MPs and ministers, but he said there would be no increases in the next legislature if people chose a Labour government.

timesofmalta.com Wednesday, January 9, 2013, 19:50

 

Labour leader Joseph Muscat has committed to introducing civil unions for same-sex couples, saying this would not be a simple partnership contract open to everyone including siblings. Recalling the fact that Labour decriminalised homosexuality 40 years ago, Dr Muscat said this would be the next big breakthrough for the LGBT community. "Hopefully we will not have to wait another 40 years for more steps forward," he said, after explaining how his own views on the subject had evolved both as an MEP and as Labour leader. He said a Labour government was committed to the introduction of civil unions for gay couples and this was not just an empty pre-electoral pledge. He said this measure would probably not be a vote-catcher but he was determined to convince those who disagreed with him. "This is not about tolerance but about rights and responsibilities," he said. Dr Muscat said he would also appoint a minister or parliamentary secretary for civil rights and equality and set up a consultative council to advise government on LGBT issues so that laws across the board are tailored to the needs of the community. This would include LGBT-related NGOs. Dr Muscat also promised to forward a gender identity bill to rectify issues facing the trans community. A Labour government would also widen the remit of the employment commission to fight gender and sexual orientation discrimination. Speaking a seminar on LGBT rights by LGBT Labour, Dr Muscat also committed a future government to the signing of Protocol 12 the European Convention of Human Rights, which prohibits discrimination on various grounds.

timesofmalta.com Saturday, January 12, 2013, 18:52

 

Opposition leader Joseph Muscat yesterday announced that a Labour government would revise the current parliamentary situation and would tie politicians’ honoraria with their attendance in parliament.

Editorjal, The Malta Independent 15.1.2013

 

A Labour government will introduce a final withholding tax of 15 per cent for the property rental market to replace the current 35 per cent income tax. Labour leader Joseph Muscat said this would not only encourage people to rent out their properties but would also discourage tax evasion. He was addressing a gathering for business leaders, mostly from the property sector, in an event organised by Labour’s Business Forum. In a second proposal, Dr Muscat said his government would also revise, in the shortest time possible, the permanent residence scheme, which, he said, was not reaching its aims.  This would give the economy the required injection of capital. He spoke about the other proposals, saying Labour would cut down bureaucracy, update regulations and remove old ones, and give legislation an expiry date, better known as sunset clauses. Dr Muscat also spoke briefly on the energy tariffs and the Standard & Poor’s report which he said set alarm bells ringing. Replying to questions, Dr Muscat said that the Mepa reform had failed completely and the authority’s revenue dropped rather than increased. He said Labour would be announcing proposals for a wide ranging reform which would address issues related to Mepa in the coming weeks.

timesofmalta.com Wednesday, January 16, 2013, 16:25

 

Labour leader Joseph Muscat has announced a €3.1 million project to introduce free childcare for single and married parents on full-time employment, which he says will push more women into the labour market. Muscat said a new Labour government will create a private-public partnership with childcare centres that will generate 500 new jobs in childcare over the next five years. He also said the proposal, which will cost €3.1 million in the first year, will generate a clawback on new taxation revenues from the creation of new jobs and the entry of 2,500 women into the labour market over and above current projections, over the next five years. "We will address shortcomings pointed out by Standard & Poor's, namely the low level of participation of women in the Maltese labour market," Muscat said, referring to Thursday's downgrade of the sovereign credit rating to BBB+. Muscat said mothers will still benefit from tax reductions they currently enjoy to re-enter the labour market. Muscat even claimed the outlay will eventually decrease. "It is a modest outlay considering the benefits there are. When €4 million was spent on the offices of Malta Enterprise, you can see how modest the spend is. The free childcare will be for parents, single and married, who are in full-time employment for children under three. But the scheme will be eventually extended pro-rata for part-time workers. Muscat has also pledged a 25% reduction in bureaucracy, in a review to be conducted by a specially appointed commissioner who will take stock of government administrative procedures.

maltatoday.com.mt Friday 18 January 2013 - 10:09

 

A free tablet computer will be given to Year IV schoolchildren to improve their IT literacy, according to plans unveiled by the Labour Party this morning. Unveiling the party's roadmap for education, Labour leader Joseph Muscat said the core principles were that education would continue to be free of charge and that more young people would study after secondary school. A Labour government, he said, would boost efforts against illiteracy, including IT literacy. To boost IT literacy, a Labour government would give a free tablet computer to all schoolchildren in Year IV in all primary schools - private, church and government. This initiative would be carried out in conjunction with the private sector. The cost was estimated conservatively at €1.5 million. Some 4,000 pupils would benefit from the 'one tablet per child' scheme. "This is the future," Dr Muscat said, adding that the private sector would be invited to participate in a fund for this scheme and contribute to it as part of their corporate social responsibility. The issue would be discussed with the private sector and there could be tax cuts for contributors. However the €1.5m outlay estimate was based on the government footing the bill. He said Labour did not plan revolutions in education, but to build on the good that existed. A new government, he said would launch a national strategy against illiteracy. It would empower teachers and heads of school, rather than having them constrained by 'orders from above'. Teachers, he said, knew best what was good for the children in their care, and they should be able to come up with initiatives to help pupils in groups and individually. Local and school libraries would be strengthened and the central library would be modernised and better resourced. Education spokesman Evarist Bartolo said the purpose was to have functional literacy, enabling more people to participate in society and the labour sector. Malta, he said, placed at the bottom end of international surveys on literacy skills. Breaking down the literacy barriers means giving children the tools they needed not to fall back. There was also need to work closer with families, particularly those near the poverty line. Labour's emphasis on childcare centres, he said, was part of this educational initiative because the early years were crucial for child development. Replying to questions, Dr Muscat said Labour would not touch the stipends. Mr Bartolo said Labour regretted its measures to restructure the stipends system in 1996 but said it had been constrained by the serious financial situation it inherited from the previous Nationalist government.

timesofmalta.com Thursday, January 24, 2013, 09:21

 

A "drastically" increased police presence was needed in Swieqi and other localities neighbouring entertainment hotspots, PL leader Joseph Muscat said this afternoon. Dr Muscat also said the PL would move legislation ensuring crimes committed against the elderly received harsher sentences, and said he would push for a law protecting vulnerable people from white-collar crime committed by professionals or even their own family members. He said towns such as Swieqi had to be treated differently to other residential areas, with nearby entertainment areas contributing to spikes in petty crime and neighbourhood disturbances.

timesofmalta.com Wednesday, January 23, 2013, 15:14

 

A Labour government would conclude a review of the judiciary by the end of the year and reassess the entire court system, Joseph Muscat said this morning. Dr Muscat said the review would be carried out by people beyond reproach. He did not say who the Labour Party had in mind. The Labour leader suggested email and SMS alerts to inform the public about deferred sittings and called on case scheduling to be done electronically. The review would also look into the way in which judges and magistrates were appointed, with Dr Muscat hinting at Parliament having a greater role but insisting "all options are on the table". He said a whistleblower act was a priority and suggested two changes to the existing draft law. The  first change would make the law applicable to past cases, without a cut-off date. The second change would protect whistleblowers from prosecution when their evidence was self-incriminating.

timesofmalta.com Wednesday, January 23, 2013, 09:45

 

A Labour proposal to extend planning permits beyond their five year expiry date will come with conditions attached, according to Joseph Muscat. The Labour leader said the extension will not be open-ended but did not elaborate when asked by timesofmalta.com about the proposal he made on Monday. Dr Muscat insisted the Labour Party will shortly announce a package of proposals aimed at reforming the planning process and more details will be given then about the extension. "There will be a process to obtain the extension and this will also be linked to the local plans. Extensions will not be ad eternum," he said. Dr Muscat reiterated there were situations where developers, who had taken years to obtain a permit had difficulty to develop the site within the stipulated time frame. "The options they have are either to lose the permit after five years and re-apply at a later stage with all the costs involved or else start to commit the site within the five years at unfavorable economic conditions," he explained, adding Labour was committed to address this situation.

timesofmalta.com Tuesday, January 22, 2013, 14:46

 

Any inheritance parents leave in trust for children with a disability will be 100 per cent tax free as part of PL proposals for a fairer society, Labour leader Joseph Muscat said this afternoon. Tax-free inheritance would accompany additional resources for Agenzia Sapport and a greater focus on integrating the disabled into community life, with more incentives for businesses to employ 'differently-abled' workers, Dr Muscat said. "The answer is inclusivity, not institutionalisation. We need to build communities in which those with special needs can live independent lives, and which can ease the minds of parents worried about what will happen once they pass away," Dr Muscat said.

timesofmalta.com Monday, January 21, 2013, 18:03

 

A free tablet computer will be given to Year IV schoolchildren to improve their IT literacy, according to plans unveiled by the Labour Party this morning. Unveiling the party's roadmap for education, Labour leader Joseph Muscat said the core principles were that education would continue to be free of charge and that more young people would study after secondary school. A Labour government, he said, would boost efforts against illiteracy, including IT literacy. To boost IT literacy, a Labour government would give a free tablet computer to all schoolchildren in Year IV in all primary schools - private, church and government. This initiative would be carried out in conjunction with the private sector. The cost was estimated conservatively at €1.5 million. Some 4,000 pupils would benefit from the 'one tablet per child' scheme. "This is the future," Dr Muscat said, adding that the private sector would be invited to participate in a fund for this scheme and contribute to it as part of their corporate social responsibility. The issue would be discussed with the private sector and there could be tax cuts for contributors. However the €1.5m outlay estimate was based on the government footing the bill. He said Labour did not plan revolutions in education, but to build on the good that existed. A new government, he said would launch a national strategy against illiteracy. It would empower teachers and heads of school, rather than having them constrained by 'orders from above'. Teachers, he said, knew best what was good for the children in their care, and they should be able to come up with initiatives to help pupils in groups and individually. Local and school libraries would be strengthened and the central library would be modernised and better resourced. Education spokesman Evarist Bartolo said the purpose was to have functional literacy, enabling more people to participate in society and the labour sector. Malta, he said, placed at the bottom end of international surveys on literacy skills. Breaking down the literacy barriers means giving children the tools they needed not to fall back. There was also need to work closer with families, particularly those near the poverty line. Labour's emphasis on childcare centres, he said, was part of this educational initiative because the early years were crucial for child development. Replying to questions, Dr Muscat said Labour would not touch the stipends. Mr Bartolo said Labour regretted its measures to restructure the stipends system in 1996 but said it had been constrained by the serious financial situation it inherited from the previous Nationalist government.

timesofmalta.com Thursday, January 24, 2013, 09:21

 

A Labour government will allocate money for a pedestrian crossing at the Mriehel bypass in the next Budget, according to Joseph Muscat. He said the pedestrian crossing was needed for the safety of a small community that was ostracized from the rest of Qormi when the bypass was built in the 1990s. "No community is small enough," he insisted, recalling that in 2010 Government MPs had voted against a motion put forward by Labour MPs from the district for the construction of a footbridge or underpass. The issue gained notoriety when two teenage girls were killed in 2005 after they were run over while crossing the bypass to reach their houses. On various occasions the Government had pledged to build a footbridge but plans were scrapped in this legislature. Dr Muscat was speaking inside the living room of a Qormi family that opened its house to his entourage and journalists because of the bad weather. The Labour leader noted that Transport Minister Austin Gatt had argued against the footbridge because studies had shown only 40 people a day crossed the bypass. "This is a fallacious argument, especially coming from someone who built a bridge to nowhere in Grand Harbour that is used by no one." Dr Muscat said Labour was committed to adopt the Budget presented last November and no funds were allocated for this project. However, he said in the next Budget to be presented at the end of this year, money will be found for the project. He quantified the expense of a footbridge at almost €400,000 but insisted studies will have to be done to assess the best option between a bridge and an underpass.

timesofmalta.com Friday, January 25, 2013, 12:52

 

PL leader Joseph Muscat this morning pledged that if elected to government PL will invest in the rehabilitation of the waterpolo pitch and develop it into a complex. Dr Muscat explained how due to the structural condition of the pitch, part of the area had to be demolished in 2009 and was never reconstructed. Adressing a press conference on site, the PL leader said that this project has been promised for the past 10 years and in 2011 the PN government had said that it will build waterpolo and football pitches in the locality, however the tenders for these were only issued in April 2012.

di-ve.com news Last Updated 25 | 01 | 2013 at 12:43

 

The people would be able to nominate and vote for some members on government boards in a system similar to the election of the boards of listed companies, Labour leader Joseph Muscat said today. The pilot project would see individual seats on authorities and entities open to online nominations and voting, Dr Muscat said. Boards falling under the new syste might include those of regulatory bodies. Voting parameters had yet to be set, he said, but the system would be in place as soon as possible. He said PL open governance proposals would also include draft legislation published online consultation, with the government making extended use of social networking sites to solicit and receive policy suggestions. "We want to avoid legislation by stealth," Dr Muscat told journalists in Mgarr, Gozo. "We want an accountable, transparent government, and we're not afraid of letting go of some power to open government up beyond politicians."

timesofmalta.com Saturday, January 26, 2013, 14:47

 

A Labour government will raise the ceiling of part-time work taxed at 15%, effectively reducing tax for part-timers, Labour leader Joseph Muscat said this morning. The Labour leader said the limit, which has been frozen for the past 14 years, will be raised to income up to €10,000 from €7,000. Another measure will be the introduction of a tax credit of €2,000 for women over 35 entering the labour market for first time. Dr Muscat said the Labour roadmap for economic growth aimed at encouraging  work. He said Labour was making several proposals for growth. The preferred model for government's projects was public-private partnerships. He said Labour would introduce a Family Business Act to facilitate the transfer of a business from one generation to another, simplifying tax regime in this regard. A new government would work with the private sector to create venture capital funds for new businesses. Tax credit would be given for those who open a new company. There would be start-up tax credit of €8,000 or 10 per cent of investment and this would be availed of in the first four years. This proposal, Dr Muscat said, would not impact government revenue because it dealt with future streams of revenue. Full-timers, pensioners and students who had a small business on the side would pay 15 per cent tax on the first €12,000 income derived from the part-time business. This would help cut down on the black economy. This measure, he said, was   expected to target 3,000 people. It would cost €1.5 million but it would be offset by curbing evasion. Part-time workers would have the portion taxable at a flat 15 per cent increase to €10,000 from €7,000. The ceiling has been frozen for 14 years.  Dr Muscat said this measure would  curb evasion. The measure would apply to full-timers, students and pensioners. Some 20,000 people would benefit from this measure which would cost €5 million. Women over 35 entering the labour market for first time would be given a tax credit of €2,000. This tax credit was not conditioned by their children's age, Dr Muscat said, There are some 5,000 women, who according to NSO, may benefit. Labour would also provide a tax credit of 150 per cent to companies for the value of training given to workers or new employees. The expense will be capped at €3 million and EU funds can be tapped.

timesofmalta.com Monday, January 28, 2013, 10:18

 

A Labour government will separate the planning and environment functions of the planning authority, according to Joseph Muscat. Addressing journalists in front of theMepa offices in Floriana, the Labour leader unveiled wide-ranging changes to the composition of the authority, including the right for local councils to have a vote on the board. Dr Muscat said environment groups and developers had long been asking for the environment and planning functions to be separated as they were in the past. A regulatory authority incorporating the environment and resources would be set up with a vote on the planning board - as opposed to a simple recommendation as it is today. Dr Muscat said that for big projects, the affected local council would be given a right to vote on the board when a decision is taken. Asked by timesofmalta.com whether the political parties would lose the seat they have on the board, Dr Muscat said Labour had no problem with that but any such decision will have to be taken in agreement with the Opposition. "We don't feel the government should impose this because the Opposition may interpret this as lack of scrutiny. But if the Opposition agrees, we have no problem in removing the party representatives on the planning board." Describing the MEPA reform undertaken by the current administration as a "spectacular failure", Dr Muscat said planning fees will also be reviewed downwards to make them realistic. On the illegal Armier boathouses, he said "a reasonable and just solution" had to be found.

 

The proposals

01.Planning and environmental functions will be separated. Today they fall under one umbrella at Mepa.

02.Environment and resources will fall under one authority. The authority will have a vote on the planning authority board and not simply a recommendation.

03.A planning and sustainable development authority will replace MEPA.

04.A parliamentary committee to oversee planning issues will be set up. Dedicated sessions for Gozo.

05.Local councils affected by certain development projects will be given a vote on the planning board when those projects come up for decision.

06.Extend regularisation scheme for illegalities, especially related to sanitary laws.

07.Planning tariffs will be reviewed to make them sustainable and reasonable.

08.Architects will be empowered to issue compliance certificates. They will be professionally responsible for their actions.

09.Permit extensions will be given in certain cases

10.More minor developments will fall under the notification system.

11.A fund will be set up for green groups, which they can tap to finance research on projects they will want to object to.

12.Green groups will appoint a representative on the planning authority and the environment and resources authority.

timesofmalta.com Wednesday, January 30, 2013, 09:54

 

Labour leader Joseph Muscat said today that Labour is proposing to introduce a fully-paid sabbatical of up to one year to enable teachers to further their studies, in a way which did not cause disruption in schools. Speaking outside the Lyceum in Hamrun, he said Labour was also proposing a system for teachers to be able to easily transfer between state, private and church schools without losing salary progression. He said Labour wanted to beef up safety and security in schools. Incidents of violence against teachers were a matter of concern, he said, and should be tackled. He said all the proposals would be discussed with the Malta Union of Teachers. In other proposals, Dr Muscat said a Labour government would launch an educational and information campaign to promote more respect for teachers and for the status of teachers in society to be improved. Labour would also remove clerical and bureaucratic duties which teachers were performing, enabling them to focus on teaching. 'Labour wants to build a coalition with teachers and their union," the Labour leader said. He said talks would be held on a new minimum national curriculum where teachers would have an enabling role. An annual national conference for all teaching grades would also be held to discuss the educational system. He said Labour wanted to improve working conditions for teachers. Labour would also introduce a new school maintenance programme.

timesofmalta.com Thursday, January 31, 2013, 09:38

 

A new Labour government will foot the bill for operations to take place in private hospitals if the government hospital does not respect a deadline for an operation that would have been set beforehand, Labour leader Joseph Muscat said. Describing Mater Dei Hospital as being in a state of emergency, Muscat said that tackling overcrowding and overbooking in the medium to long-term required improving primary health centres, but also opening new centres in partnership with the private sector. Muscat said services at Mater Dei will be transferred to health centres, especially in the southwest of Malta and Zurrieq and surrounding localities. Muscat denied having an agreement with the owner of St Philip's Hospital on the use of private hospitals to take in excess patients. "We have no commitment with anyone. Malta is everybody's and we have no problem working with anybody. Nobody will have any advantage over anybody else... everyone will get a level playing field." Muscat said Labour's proposals would be part and parcel of a government budget he would present in 2013 for the year 2014, if Labour were elected. The proposals include consultation and a plan of action to tackle the problem of patients being accommodated in corridors, that would include the involvement of the private sector. Muscat said the country was not in a position to build a new hospital, but said a new Labour government would tackle protocols that were creating bottlenecks, improve health centres as the first port of call for treatment, and pursue investment within the private sector. Muscat also said a new Labour government would improve the method of hospital appointments, and introduce a streamlined system. "It's unacceptable that people are booked in at the same time," Muscat said. A new Labour government would also: widen the private-public partnership concept in health; establish the maximum waiting time for operations under a patients' charter; and a dedicated call centre for operations and waiting lists that is estimated to cost €200,000 more than the existent operation. Muscat said he does not exclude involving the private sector in the operation of the call centre. He also pledged an additional €1 million investment in the Gozo general hospital, as well as continuous investment in the medical profession. He also said the private-public partnership would tackle the problem of out-of-stock medicines so that a better system would be implemented. Muscat said that under the PN's proposal for a refund to patients who have to buy their out-of-stock medicine from the pharmacy, there was no incentive for government to make sure the drugs are not out of stock because the refund would be at the price the government buys the medicine. Muscat also said a new Labour government would establish a national project to transport medicine directly to the homes of the elderly, in a bid to save them from having to stand in queues. The first beneficiaries would be those aged over 70 and those with a severe disability and will include the involvement of local councils and health centres. The delivery would be made by either pharmacists or nurses, at an estimated cost of €500,000.

maltatoday.com.mt Friday 1 February 2013 - 10:16

 

The police, soldiers, members of the Civil Protection Department and disciplinary forces will be given the right to join a union of their choice as was done in all other European countries, Labour leader Joseph Muscat said this evening. Speaking during a special session of the union's national council on the its proposals to political parties, Dr Muscat said these would, obviously, not have the right to strike but this would be a new chapter in industrial relations in Malta. Dr Muscat said that, in Malta, there were responsible trade unions who only took industrial action as a last resort and Labour hoped to work hand in hand with these unions in future. He noted that Labour had found a lot of common ground in the GWU’s proposals, especially on the electricity and water tariffs. The party’s flagship proposals were that for the environment, jobs, and clean energy. Another proposal was on precarious employment. This had been put forward by the GWU and Caritas. The proposal was that companies which use precarious employment practices would not be eligible for public contracts. Dr Muscat also spoke on the Industrial Projects and Services Limited, which was set up to absorb workers who were employed with several government entities. These workers, he said, had their salaries frozen for a long time and Labour wanted to draw up a collective agreement specifically for these workers so that their situation would improve.

timesofmalta.com Friday, February 1, 2013, 16:24

 

Labour in government would prioritise the introduction of the Whistleblower Act, laws on party financing and the removal of time-barring on political cor­ruption, as its strong message was that people deserved much better, Labour leader Joseph Muscat said yesterday. He said these laws would be the first his government would enact along with the Budget for 2013.

timesofmalta.com Monday, February 4, 2013

 

A Labour government will give patients the right to be treated at private hospitals if they are made to wait longer than a stipulated maximum period for their operations, according to leader Joseph Muscat. The Government will foot the bill in such cases and maximum waiting times would be listed in a charter of patient’s rights, which Dr Muscat said could be drawn up within a year. Speaking outside Mater Dei Hospital, he also called to establish a medicine home delivery service for those over 70, the immobile and the severely disabled. Free medicines would be delivered to patients’ doors by qualified professionals, such as retired nurses, Dr Muscat suggested, at a cost of €500,000 in the first year. Labour’s health proposals would also see an additional €8 million a year spent on primary healthcare. The money would go towards modernising existing centres and extending their range of services, as well as opening new centres in areas such as Żurrieq. Gozo General Hospital would get a €1 million-a-year budget increase, with Dr Muscat saying it needed more autonomy and greater focus on its “huge” investment potential. Dr Muscat said Labour, together with all relevant stakeholders, would assess hospital departments for inefficiencies, and suggested revamping a number of health-related procedures, from the hospital appointment booking to the systems used in procuring medicines for free distribution. A specialised patient helpline would give people a way of easily and quickly receiving updates on their medical treatment and hospital appointments. The call centre would cost €200,000 to set up, Dr Muscat said. Proposals involving expenditure increases would be included in an eventual Labour November Budget for 2014, he added. He said none of the party’s proposals precluded private sector involvement, although he categorically denied suggestions that Labour had deals lined up with any particular individual or operator. Would Labour scrap a draft contract between the Government and St Philip’s Hospital owner Frank Portelli? “I cannot scrap something I haven’t yet seen,” Dr Muscat replied, adding that Labour would ensure a level playing for all operators seeking government business.

 

Blood transfusions should be based solely on empirical data and never linked to preconceptions or prejudices, Labour leader Joseph Muscat said yesterday as he discussed the right of gay people to give blood. Dr Muscat made the comment at the end of a visit he paid to Guardamangia’s blood transfusion centre, where he asked the centre’s director Alex Aquilina about the logic behind banning blood donations from homosexuals. Dr Aquilina said people were screened according to their sexual behaviour rather than orientation and said studies had shown gay men were more likely to be unfaithful to their partner than other groups. When asked whether a gay man having protected sex was a higher risk than a heterosexual man doing so, Dr Aquilina said: “We must assess risk as a group, not individually. And studies show that blood from homosexual men is 50 times’ riskier than that of heterosexuals.” Lifetime bans on gay men donating blood prevail in many countries, although others such as the UK, Australia, Sweden and Japan allow gay men to donate blood, provided they have not had sex in the past year. Poland and Venezuela have no ban in place. The PL leader’s visit took a slightly comical turn when he was met at the door by Health Minister Joe Cassar. Ministry officials explained it was protocol for a minister to accompany the Leader of the Opposition on tours of official premises. Both men smiled for the cameras as they toured the centre, and both agreed it would be a bad idea to introduce some form of financial incentive to donate blood or organs. And although the two politicians do not see eye to eye on several issues, the commemorative mug they each received at the end of the visit means they now have at least one thing in common.

 

Dr Muscat gave short shrift to a call made by hunters to stop tourists from roaming the countryside at their leisure yesterday. “Nationality has nothing to do with it – the issue concerns trespassing on private property,” Dr Muscat said. If people were walking on public land, it made no difference whether they were Maltese or not, he added.

timesofmalta.com Saturday, February 2, 2013

 

On the party’s proposals for Gozo, Dr Muscat said the Labour Party would build a small cruise liner terminal in Gozo, possibly in Mgarr but other options would also be considered, as long as this would not involve virgin land. He said the PL was against the proposed project for Hondoq ir-Rummien. Other proposals would include a tax credit on an investment of €50,000 or 25 per cent - to be used over a four-year period, for start-ups in Gozo. Another proposal is to give back to companies employing new workers on at least a three-year contract, a €5,000 wage refund for each of the new workers. A PL government would also use EU mechanisms for the Commission to assess economic disparities between Malta and Gozo in detail to enable Gozo to tap further into EU regional funds. Labour would also work to attract international educational institutions to open up centres of excellence in Gozo, including a medical school at Gozo Hospital. It would introduce a public service obligation to create a link between Gozo and the Valletta area as well as continue to look into the creation of a permanent link between the two islands. Labour would introduce cheaper ferry rates for those who spent a minimum period of time in Gozo, it would give the Gozo courts its own judge so that more cases would be heard in Gozo and more public service back office functions would be transferred to Gozo. There would be a push to get as many university courses as possible also available in Gozo and a person representing Gozo would be sent to Dar Malta in Brussel.

timesofmalta.com Tuesday, February 5, 2013, 10:46

 

Party financing, a law protecting whistleblowers, and the removal of the statute of limitation for acts of political corruption will be a new Labour government's first acts of legislation by the time it gets to approve the 2013 Budget, Labour leader Joseph Muscat has told Radju Malta's Ghandi Xi Nghid. "We are looking forward to see that this law is introduced immediately," Muscat said when asked over the emergency of party financing as one of the unexpected themes of the 2013 election. "Labour publishes its accounts, a statement of income and expenditure and a balance sheet every year at its general conference - for us it's no big deal to say what we have spent in our electoral campaign," Muscat - who was called on by incumbent Lawrence Gonzi to declare who was bankrolling the Labour campaign - said. "We indicate the amount of donations we have... but today we don't have a party financing law. But we look forward to see that this law is introduce immediately, if elected to power," Muscat said.

maltatoday.com.mt Saturday 9 February 2013 - 10:00

 

The Labour Party intends tackling the difficulties faced by children at risk of poverty by introducing regular meetings involving heads of schools, local councils, social services and the police, among others, Labour Leader Joseph Muscat said this afternoon. Addressing a press conference in Qawra, Dr Muscat said the party believes these problems faced by children in households at risk of poverty required immediate attention because this was "unacceptable". He said local councils should be given a wider role than just looking after the locality's tarmac and street lighting. Dr Muscat said the party was also proposing regularly revising the threshold of social services to ensure that increases vulnerable families received did not cause more difficulties by excluding them from certain services because they would have surpassed the ceiling. Moreover, the party is committed to following the Union Haddiema Maghqudin's Active Labour Market Policy, through the introduction of schemes so it "pays to work" and so that people on the unemployment list are encouraged to work.

timesofmalta.com Friday, February 8, 2013, 17:28

 

At Bidnija, Dr Muscat outlined Labour’s proposals for sports. These included an upgrade of the tal-Qroqq national pool which has been left in a dilapidated state, the development of a professional indoor pool where athletes could train in comfort, the development of a motor sports track and the building of an international shooting range for Malta to be able to attract international tournaments year round, making good use of its climate. Although the party had sites in mind for the indoor pool and the shooting range, consultations still to take place and studies carried out. The PL would also continue to work on present schemes such as that where athletes worked 20 hours a week and trained for the other 20, with the government paying for the 20 hours of training. A Labour government would also consider paying for full time athletes. It would work with all sports organisations and in synergy with the Malta Tourism Authority to increase sports tourism.

timesofmalta.com Thursday, February 14, 2013, 09:45

 

An airstrip in Gozo is not a priority for a Labour government but a helicopter service will be considered, Joseph Muscat told Gozitan businessmen this afternoon. At a meeting of the Gozo Business Chamber held at the Calypso Hotel in Marsalforn, the Labour leader said having an adequate link between Gozo and Malta was important. "We know you want an airstrip but we do not feel this is a priority and instead will consider a helicopter service and a fast ferry service between Mgarr and Valletta," Dr Muscat said. He also pledged that studies on the creation of a tunnel link between the two islands will continue.

timesofmalta.com Saturday, February 16, 2013, 16:23

 

 

 

 

Dr. Mario Tabone Vassallo fuq id-decizjoni li jaqleb mall-Partit Laburista

Manifest Elettorali tal-Partit Laburista ghall-elezzjoni 2013

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