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Company Law

Analysis - guidance - compliance

24 SEP 2013

MALTA: A MAGNET FOR FOREIGN INVESTMENT?

Simon Xuereb LL.D., Adv. LL.M.
Manager, Tax Services
KPMG, Malta

Malta has successfully weathered the challenges posed by the global financial crisis and the EU sovereign debt crisis. This can be attributed to the domestic macro-economic conditions which have remained supportive of financial stability, and prudent banking practices characterised by healthy solvency and liquidity positions. Both these factors have ensured that Malta remains immune from the adverse consequences of the so-called ‘negative feedback loop’ which hit a number of other euro area countries over the past year.

 

The EEAG Report on the European Economy 2013 attributes the robust economic momentum enjoyed by Malta in recent years to the solid condition of its public and private finances, as well as the country’s high level of international competitiveness. Indeed, Malta’s economic fundamentals are sound, enabling the country to face up to the challenges posed by the external environment, a fact evidenced by the IMF 2013 Mission’s Concluding Statement which confirmed the soundness of Malta’s financial sector.  This taken together with the recent publication of the EU Commission’s spring forecast wherein Malta’s GDP growth for 2013 is expected to be among the highest in Europe, clearly shows a healthy economy weathering in the current economic crisis.  

 

The recent change in government has only served to reaffirm Malta’s commitment to international competitiveness and the further development of a favourable climate for private business, a fact clearly evidenced by the recent statement by the Parliamentary Secretary for Economic Growth where he reaffirmed the government’s commitment to putting Malta at the forefront of countries that offer substantial advantages to foreign investors without unnecessary bureaucracy.  To this end the government intends to provide support to private companies with the aim of encouraging them to embark on new projects and attract foreign investment to Malta.

 

This continued mind-set can be seen in Malta’s continued, growing attraction as a jurisdiction of choice for multi-nationals seeking a cost and tax efficient jurisdiction.  As an EU Member State it is an ideal jurisdiction for international and financial business. Through the application of its imputation tax system, Malta offers the lowest effective tax rate in the EU and is an ideal holding company location, having a 100% participation exemption and a wide treaty network.  The financial services industry has been experiencing a steady growth for a number of years. Several new banks have set up over the last years, the insurance captives industry boast of numerous Fortune 100 companies in its ranks and Malta is also one of the fastest growing fund domiciles in the EU.  In order to service this ever growing industry, a beneficial flat tax rate is offered to expatriates working in financial services.  In addition Malta is also active in the production industry with substantial investment in manufacturing and logistics operations, research and development activities and the ICT sector. The ICT sector has also helped fuel the remote gaming and digital gaming industries and Malta is today undoubtedly one of their domiciles of choice.

 

If you are attracted to investing in Malta and want to know more information on how the business regulations in Malta will affect your investment decision, refer to International Corporate Procedures, a country-by-country encyclopaedia on business regulations. For more information visit our website or call an account manager on +44(0)207 400 3312.

 

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