Economy of Malta
The economic prosperity in Malta has been raised at much faster rates since the country had joined the EU. Malta has seen low inflation rates, low unemployment and the adoption of a currency that the majority of Europeans hold in their pockets. Malta was also one of the least affected countries from the recent economic depression due to its EU membership, low debt –to- GDP ratio and a financially sound banking sector. With few natural resources Malta imports most of its food and fresh water and 100% of its energy. The economy depends on tourism, foreign trade, manufacturing (especially electronics) and financial services. Well trained workers, low labour costs, productive labour force, low corporate tax and the membership in the EU attract a strong flow of foreign investment.
In 2014, Malta led in Eurozone growth, expanding by nearly 3.5% and is expected to continue expanding at roughly the same rate over the next few years. The main driver for this growth is expected to be a boost in domestic demand, supported by growing disposable income of households, also reflecting the reduction of electricity tariffs, and investment in large energy projects. The Government reduced residential and commercial energy tariffs by 25% which contributed to the one of the lowest inflation rates in Europe in 2014, which stood at 0.6%. The unemployment rate in Malta currently stands at 5.9% comparing favourable to unemployment rates of 11.6% and 10.3% recorded in the Euro area and Eurozone respectively.
- Malta’s GDP per capita is below the euro area average, but its growth rate over the past 10 years has exceeded that of its neighbours, leading to impressive gains in many economic and social fields.
- The World Economic Forum (WEF) Global Competitiveness Report for 2011/2012 ranked Malta 51st out of 139 countries. Malta gets high marks for innovation and for its financial markets.
- Malta will use EU funds to help partially pay for some planned public investment projects in environment and infrastructure. The emphasis is on improving the quality of drinking water and the elimination of waste. Other environmental measures will aim to protect the natural environment and make increased use of renewable energy sources. This priority also concerns transport, educational and social infrastructures, service infrastructures for industry and aid for SMEs in the productive sector and tourism.
Malta’s Economy in Figures via The Central Bank
GDP 2014: EUR 7,961.5 million
GDP per capita, 2014: EUR 18,640
GDP real growth 2014 : 3.5%
Employed population: (Q4 2014) 180,124
Unemployment rate: (Q4 2014) 5.9%
Internet users (% population): 80.7%