Malta u l-politika

Ittri ċċensurati u punti ta' riflessjoni politika.

Budget 2019

The Malta Union of Midwives and Nurses welcomed the Budget surplus saying this should lead to further investment in the health sector addressing the problem of lack of professionals including of nurses and social workers. It said it would be exploring in greater detail the announcement about a new scheme for professionals in the public sector to continue working after reaching retirement age. The MUMN said it expected the benefits to be given in the Budget to workers who risked their life on duty to also be extended to health sector employees who were also putting their life in danger. Tuesday, October 23, 2018, 08:30

The Malta Developers Association (MDA) said the Budget reflected the economic progress Malta was making and was a good effort towards ensuring that everyone benefitted from this progress. It noted that incentives for property buyers introduced in the past on its suggestion were being retained. Other new suggestions by the MDA were also taken up by government, such as the need for incentivising privately owned parking facilities as well as landlords to encourage longer leases. It welcomed the new scheme intended to help the over 40s buy property. The MDA regretted that its suggestions to promote energy-saving measures in buildings and aid contractors buy new environment friendly equipment were not taken up. Tuesday, October 23, 2018, 08:30

The Chamber of Commerce welcomed measures to promote fair enforcement and a level playing field in business. It also welcomed plans for new entities to promote Malta's efforts in fintech, blockchain and artificial intelligence. Monday, October 22, 2018, 21:02

The Malta Union of Teachers has said that the budget is merely a continuation of the work done by the government in the education sector but made "no reference to the serious problems" facing the sector. In its initial reaction following the budget, the union noted positive measures in the 'My Journey' initiative, the strengthening of teaching foreign languages, and the studying of the link between secondary and post-secondary education. The mention to pedagogical training for educations; and the free payment of MATSEC examinations was also a positive step. However, the MUT expressed its dismayed that the budget failed to address the current shortage in the teaching sector. Monday, 22 October 2018, 20:31

The Malta Employer's Association praised initiatives brought about robust economic performance but said that the budget indicated a lack of longer-term version, particularly in the terms of the labour market and education. Monday, 22 October 2018, 20:31

The General Workers Union (GWU) hailed the measures in the 2019 Budget as a “reflection of economic success”. It continued by explaining that this is the ‘social justice’ kind of politics that allows an ever-growing economy to reach the citizen - measures that “leave more money in the pockets of the people.” “The increase in pensions, strengthening of social benefits, increased benefits for the disabled, the increase in children’s’ allowance, extending the measure of public transport for students, the work-benefit for the disciplined forces, the extension of schemes for those who buy their first and second home, as well as measures designed to increase the amount of jobs in Gozo are all evidence of this economic expansion.” Monday, 22 October 2018, 20:31

UHM – Voice of the Workers said the budget addresses certain pockets of society but lacks long-term economic vision. It noted several positive measures, such as the pensions increase, the COLA, the additional day of leave, free MATSEC exams and free cancer medicine. Monday, 22 October 2018, 20:31

Alternattiva Demokratika said that while the Budget had strengthened the social security net for various sectors of society, it missed the mark on environmental grounds. The speech did not make a single mention of the “circular economy”, despite the Environment Minister’s repeated mention of this as a priority. While the Budget speech highlighted plans to introduce waste-to-energy technology, there was no indication of how these methods – which require large volumes of waste to be viable – would be reconciled with plans to reduce volumes of waste. Tuesday, October 23, 2018, 08:30

Gozo Tourism Association said the Budget overall reflected the economic growth environment in various sectors including the tourism industry. It said that while no fiscal measures were introduced toward the Gozitan tourism industry, there were measures which targetted the improvement of the tourism product in Gozo. It welcomed the extension of the refund scheme through which employers would get a 30% refund (up to €6,000), of the salary paid for each new job created in the Gozitan private sector on a three-year contract. Tuesday, October 23, 2018, 08:30

The Gozo University Group said the increase in stipends would help cover expenses students had. They would also benefit from the extended free public transport measure. Public transport should, however, be improved and made more accessible and reliable. The announcement that, as from next year, MATSEC and SEC exams were to be free of charge as a major step forward that would ease the financial burden on students and their parents. Tuesday, October 23, 2018, 08:30

Budget 2019, read out last night by Minister Edward Scicluna, is not just promoting continuity, but also spreading the proceeds from the growth registered these past years.

Editorjal, The Malta Independent 23.10.2018

Il-Kamra Maltija għan-Negozji ż-żgħar (GRTU) spjegat li n-negozjanti li tirrappreżenta kienu qed jistennew li t-taxxa tiġi mnaqqsa b’mod sostanzjali. Dan qalitu fi stqarrija b’reazzjoni għall-Baġit 2019 li nqara lbieraħ filgħaxija fil-Parlament mill-Ministru għall-Finanzi Edward Scicluna. Filwaqt li ddeskriviet il-baġit bħala wieħed pożittiv, il-GRTU sostniet li huwa nieqes mill-kreattività u ma jirriflettix kemm verament kbiret l-ekonomija. Il-GRTU semmiet ukoll modi ta’ kif il-baġit se jolqot b’mod pożittiv lil dawn in-negozjanti. Hawnhekk issemmiet li se tgħola l-paga u l-benefiċċji li se jħallu aktar flus fil-bwiet li jiġġeneraw in-negozju, kif ukoll li persuni self-employed li n-negozju tagħhom jfalli jkunu jistgħu jieħdu l-benefiċċju soċjali bħall-ħaddiema bla xogħol.Issemma wkoll kif il-Gvern aċċetta l-proposta li kienet għamlet il-GRTU sabiex jiżdied is-sussidju biex in-negozjant żgħir ikun eliġibbli għal pensjoni oħra. Spunt pożittiv ieħor għall-GRTU hija l-iskema li meta wieħed jgħaddi n-negozju tiegħu lil uliedu jiffranka somom konsiderevoli f’taxxa tal-boll minn 5% għal 1.5%. 23/10/2018, 9:15 am

Il-Kap tal-Partit Demokratiku Godfrey Farrugia, sostna li mill-Baġit 2019, il-poplu ħa żieda ta’ €2.33, li rrimarka hija ħaqq xirja ta’ ftit ġobon, ħobż u ftit ħalib. 23/10/2018, 9:15 am

The Budget for 2019 presented by Finance Minister Edward Scicluna last Monday is a reflection of a robust economy and sound public finances. Malta remains one of the best performing economies in Europe: the economy grew by 6.7 per cent in real terms in 2017, by 5.4 per cent in the first six months of 2018 and is forecast to grow by 5.3 per cent in 2019. For the third consecutive year the country is expected to enjoy a budget surplus in 2019 while the 2018 debt-to-GDP ratio is estimated to be 46.9 per cent and that for 2019 is forecast at 43.8 per cent. Unemployment stands at 3.8 per cent. These positive figures enabled the government to introduce a number of good social measures in the Budget such as the granting of an additional day of leave, an increase in the minimum wage, another tax refund for those earning under €60,000, an increase in the children’s allowance, an increase in pensions, the retention of the annual €300 grant to persons aged 75 or older who live at home and an increase in the maximum tax deduction for parents of children at independent schools. Most of the above measures strengthen the country’s safety net and increase disposable income, and are therefore to be welcomed, especially in view of the fact that the gap between the haves and the have-nots in our society appears to be widening. … Regarding the environment, the planned waste-to-energy plant and the beverage bottle deposit returns scheme are positive measures.

Editorjal, The Sunday Times 28.10.2018

Caritas Malta questioned whether wealth is being shared equally in its reaction to next year's budget. The Church charity acknowledged that the budget was a socially sensitive one, as it contained measures that addressed the needs of the working poor. Such measures included increased children’s allowance and benefits for people with a disability and mental health issues. It also welcomed measures that addressed rent and housing. It said that other measures that supported Caritas’ clients included efforts to eradicate Hepatitis C, investment in the prison system that supported rehabilitation and in-work benefits. However, the charity questioned the adequate distribution of wealth and whether the announced increases would actually address the increased cost of living. Wednesday, October 31, 2018, 16:18

Partit Demokratiku noted with satisfaction certain positive elements within the budget measures relating to education, such as the removal of all exam fees for MATSEC and SEC exams, and agrees that the education system is to be re-addressed with a programme which is more fitting to an individual student's abilities. "The delivery system needs to shift to one of empowerment and formative education." PD is however concerned that certain issues have not been addressed adequately despite their importance. Sunday, 4 November 2018, 13:49