Malta's Advantages in Brief
When considering the advantages of a particular investment location, one must take a comprehensive approach. Economic stability, healthy industrial relations, a flexible labour force, strategic location and of course, the incentives offered, all influence a country's competitiveness in a positive manner.
- Strategic location & Communications
- The Workforce
- The Incentives
- Malta's Industrial Base
- Living & working in Malta
- How long would setting-up take?
Strategic Location & Communications
One of the cornerstones of Malta's marketing strategy revolves around its strategic location advantage. Offering easy access to all markets due to its advanced infrastructure and air/shipping connections, Malta is an ideal base to penetrate both the Southern European as well as the North African markets and beyond.
The island's physical location in the centre of the Mediterranean is also ideal. Air and sea passenger and freight connections are excellent. London is just 3 hours by air, Rome a mere one-and-a-half hours. The Central European time zone also facilitates business with both European and North American clients.
The state-of-the-art telecommunications system is constantly upgraded and includes fully compatible GSM digital cellular services. Internet usage at the end of 2001 was approximately 13% of the whole population, and is rising rapidly.
Malta's workforce is multilingual, highly skilled, educated, and perhaps most important of all, flexible. Many investors praise the work ethic of the Maltese who produce high quality work at a fraction of European and North American costs.
There are more university graduates on a pro rata basis, than in many other competitor countries. This greatly enhances opportunities for research and development to be carried out on the island. To ensure that academic qualifications and skills go hand-in-hand with the ever-changing requirements of modern industry, there is close co-operation between industry, the 400-year-old University of Malta and a number of technical training colleges.
The new Business Promotion Act incentives are very attractive and cover tax incentives, soft loans, investment allowances, training assistance and others. Another very important aspect of the BPA is that it is proactive in the sense that it allows flexibility in activities. A more detailed description of the BPA incentives may be found here.
Malta's Industrial Base
Approximately 200 foreign and some 400 locally-owned manufacturing companies are operating very profitably, most having experienced growth beyond initial predictions. Although large international companies producing millions of items are successful, Malta works very well for companies producing short runs of complex items with high value-added. There are many firms that specialise in specific items such as industrial radio remote controls, dosing-pump sensors, electronic point-of-sale terminals, GPS modules for mobile phones, plastic and rubber parts, toys, etc, that need to change certain specifications from client to client in a very short time.
Malta is also eminently suitable for the 'newer' fields such as software development. The island is home to companies providing data transmission services through satellite and fibre optic networks.
In terms of productivity, profitability, quality and response time, locally based foreign-owned plants consistently achieve excellent results.
Living and Working in Malta
There are of course other so-called 'soft' issues such as Malta's excellent lifestyle, culture, schools and hospitals etc. Distances are short and all amenities are within easy reach. All these and other factors contribute to a healthy and very safe business environment.
How long would setting-up take?
Whereas in some competitor countries potential investors must start by actually purchasing a plot of undeveloped land, in Malta investors can be operating in a leased ready-built factory within a few months from the date of application.