1. A diversified Finance Centre
Malta plays host to one of the most dynamic and globally connected international finance centres, which is quickly gaining a reputation as an incubator for innovation. The depth and breadth of Malta’s financial sector along with its world-class products and services is what gives Malta the competitive edge over other jurisdictions. A transparent international business partner, Malta offers investors a diverse portfolio of high-quality and well-regulated services for funds, insurance, securitisation, trusts and foundations, banking and financial institutions, payments, blockchain technologies, maritime and aviation management services.
2. Fast-growing Economy
Rated as one of Europe’s best performing and one of the fastest growing economies in the world, Malta has seen steady GDP growth in the region of 5% per annum in recent years. For a small island nation, Malta’s economy is surprisingly diverse. Financial services, iGaming, tourism, maritime services and high value manufacturing are among the sectors that form the basis of the economy.
3. One Regulator
Malta has one financial services regulator, the Malta Financial Services Authority (MFSA), which means companies can benefit from reduced bureaucracy and more streamlined processes. Viewed as serious yet approachable, the MFSA strives to ensure that rules and regulations are flexible enough to allow innovation without compromising the highest standards of consumer protection.
4. EU Advantage
Malta’s EU membership provides companies with access to the Union’s massive internal market of over 500 million people, but the island’s connections go far beyond that, and Malta is an ideal jumping-off point for accessing the growing markets in Africa and the Middle East.
Malta is part of the EU since 2004
5. Professional Services
The international Business Community is strongly supported by an impressive selection of corporate service providers as well as accounting and auditing firms, ranging from small boutique practices to the global ‘Big Four’ accountancy firms. In addition, a large number of law and consultancy firms operate on the island, providing new entrants with the right insight and guidance to make the most of the opportunities that Malta’s finance sector offers.
6. Access to Decision Makers
Malta’s size makes access to decision makers relatively easy. The MFSA is approachable and offers face-to-face meetings with international companies seeking to operate from Malta – a level of access that is rare in other finance centres.
Learn more about Malta's top Banks
7. Global Names
The rising status of Malta’s International Finance Centre is reflected in the increasing number of international brands that operate from the island. Companies such as HSBC, Aon, March, Munch Re, Citco and Apex have been based in Malta for many years and are among the companies that continue to re-invest on the island. In addition, a number of Fortune 500 companies have set up operations here, including multinationals such as BMW, Citroën, Peugeot and Vodafone.
8. Connected to the world
Malta International Airport offers connections to almost every major city in Europe and to key destinations in North Africa and the Middle East, including direct flights to major finance and business centres such as London, Frankfurt, Paris, Dubai, Istanbul, Amsterdam and Madrid. Rated as one of the best small airports in the world, it is well equipped to meet the needs of business travellers. Malta also has a thriving business aviation sector, including many private jet operators who are providing flexible travel alternatives to discerning executives.
Malta International Airport
9. Competitive Tax System
Companies are taxed at 35% on all profits, however shareholders may claim a 6/7ths refund on the distribution of a dividend, which effectively reduces the corporate tax burden to 5%. Malta’s tax system has been approved by the European Union and the OECD. Further increasing Malta’s attractiveness is a network of over 70 double tax treaties, which include most global and developing economies in the world.
10. Cost Advantage
Malta’s main drawcard is the ease of doing business and the cost of operations on the island. Research has shown that Malta is generally 20 to 30% cheaper than other European centres, while a company’s start-up capital may last three to five times longer.
11. Strong Telecoms and Data infrastructure
Malta has one of the most advanced and competitive telecoms and data infrastructures in Europe. Large investments in recent years have resulted in state of-the-art networks with international connectivity. Companies can choose from a wide range of IT solutions providers to effectively manage their technology needs.
12. Company Formation
Malta has put in place a wide selection of innovative business structures that investors can choose depending on their needs. The Malta limited liability company can be used for a variety of activities, including holding and trading, mergers & acquisitions, asset management, insurance, securitisation and family offices. In addition to this, Malta offers trusts, foundations, cell companies, as well as specialised securitisation and asset management vehicles.
13. Blockchain Island
Malta is leading the charge in disruptive technology and has established the world’s first regulatory framework for blockchain, cryptocurrency and Distributed Ledger Technologies. The country is now setting its sights on developing a robust regulatory framework for Artificial Intelligence, Internet of Things, quantum technology and big data.
Malta: the Blockchain Island
14. Start-up hub
Start-ups, especially those in fintech, find Malta a particularly attractive place due to the concentration of industry players, talent and suppliers on the island. While still remaining affordable, Malta offers the right conditions for tech companies to develop, launch and scale their products.
15. Strong Work Ethic
With its combination of a pleasant Mediterranean lifestyle and British influenced work-ethic, Malta is fast becoming one of Europe’s most sought-after business centres.
FinanceMalta Investment Guide and Business Directory coming soon
16. Productivity Levels
Malta’s productivity level compares well with other European countries. Despite the famously laid-back Mediterranean lifestyle, this reputation might be misplaced when looking at Malta. Maltese workers are known for their strong ambition and can-do attitude.
17. Speed to Market
Speed to market has been the key selling point of Malta’s finance centre for many years. The island’s single regulator has simplified many of its processes and cut through much of the red tape that affects the competitiveness of the island’s finance centre while ensuring to maintain the integrity of the financial system.
18. Stamp of Approval
Malta’s financial services legislation is tried and tested and in line with EU law. It also received the stamp of approval from global institutions such as the OECD and the IMF, while the island’s economy has been given a clean bill of health by all major rating agencies.
19. A Safe Haven
Malta boasts one of the lowest crime rates in Europe, making it one of the safest and most enjoyable countries to live, work and invest. Despite welcoming two million tourists per year and being one of the most open international business centres, the island still exudes a remarkable family-friendly atmosphere.
20. Infrastructural Improvements
Malta has the infrastructure that anyone would expect to find in a prosperous citystate, although the influx of companies and foreign professionals has prompted government and the private sector to initiate a major overhaul of the country’s infrastructure and built environment.
21. Educated Workforce
Malta’s workforce is well educated, ambitious and adaptable, with a wide range of specialisation and offer. The island has become a hotspot for expat employees who now account for 30% of the workforce.
22. Work-life Balance
Malta is renowned for its excellent quality of life. The island’s small size and well-balanced rhythm offer the perfect work-life balance and opportunity to enjoy the proverbial eight hours of work, eight hours of play and eight hours of sleep.
Sky Malta Restaurant
23. Standard of Living
A small cosmopolitan country, Malta offers an excellent standard of living but without the high costs of its European neighbours. Considered to be among the best countries in the world for expats, the island allows for a kaleidoscope of lifestyle choices ranging from urban chic to Mediterranean Rural.
Couple walking in Valletta
24. English speaking Country
English, the global language of business, is one of Malta’s two official languages, along with Maltese. Laws and regulations are published in both languages. Many Maltese are also fluent in Italian and some even speak a fourth language, usually German or French.
25. A Warm Welcome
Malta is one of the most open and welcoming countries to international professionals. While EEA citizens can live and work in Malta with no restrictions, non-EU nationals require an employment permit, however highly specialised professionals can benefit from a fast-track service.
26. Talent Incentives
With talent being the lifeblood of the financial services industry, Malta offers highly qualified foreign professionals a 15% income tax cap to attract the best and brightest to live and work on the island.
27. Full Support
The financial sector enjoys the full support from Malta’s political leaders who are committed to ensuring the growth of the sector by responding to emerging trends and positioning Malta as a hub for digital and financial innovation.
28. Sunshine Island
Malta is one of the easiest places to relocate to in the EU, and residents enjoy an exceptional standard of living: 10 months of sunshine, an English-speaking population and a Mediterranean island setting in which it is easy to become a local.
29. Perfectly Timed
Malta lies in a convenient time zone for doing business across the world: one hour ahead of GMT, meaning office hours coincide with Asia in the morning, Europe throughout the day and the US in the afternoon.
Valletta Skyline (Right)
30. All Round Package
With a favourable business environment, a strong economy, EU membership, a skilled and dedicated workforce, good communications and a geographical position straddling the major trade routes, Malta offers businesses one of the most attractive all-round packages available.
Aerial View from Tigne Point: Alex Turnbull
Published: 6th August 2019