On the right track

The European Commission's 2024 Country Report acknowledges areas for improvement but underscores Malta's success in many key areas.

The European Commission’s 2024 Country Report highlights Malta’s economic performance, commending Malta for its continued strong economic growth, even projecting it to outperform other European Union member states in both 2024 and 2025.

The report delivers positive news on both wages and income inequality. It highlights that wage growth has outpaced inflation, indicating a real increase in purchasing power. Additionally, the minimum wage increase is credited with shielding low-income earners from the effects of rising prices. This positive trend is further bolstered by the report’s finding of a decrease in income inequality.

The report also focuses on the national deficit, explaining that it’s primarily driven by government spending aimed at mitigating the impact of high energy prices on families and businesses. This emphasises the targeted use of funds to provide support, rather than wasteful spending. It’s important to note that, despite the deficit, the Commission experts reassure that Malta’s national debt remains well below 60% of GDP.

As for productivity, the Commission’s analysis states that it is growing, and economic growth is generated by manufacturing and high-productivity service sectors. Instead of claims about an economy of cheap labour, European experts say that “Malta’s economy is well positioned in dynamic services exports (online gaming, management and financial services) and high value-added export of goods (pharmaceutical products, electronics and microchips)”.

In the social field, the Country Report states that “the country is progressing very well towards its 2030 employment target”. The experts also conclude that Malta has a low unemployment rate as well as noting that the number of young people not in work or studying is constantly decreasing. Thus, the report states that “Malta performs relatively well on implementing the European Pillar of Social Rights”. In fact, the Commission experts point out that the indicators on poverty in Malta are below the European average.

When it comes to the use of European funds, it is noted that Malta is benefiting more than one and a half times the average of the rest of the EU. The Commission’s report commends the projects being financed out of these funds and says that they will improve competitiveness while helping with the green transition. Malta is also strengthening digital capabilities and the institutional framework including the judiciary.

The report recognises Malta’s strides towards sustainability, noting significant progress across most sustainable development indicators. It goes further, commending Malta for being a “leader in digital public services”. This achievement showcases Malta’s commitment to both environmental well-being and technological advancement.
The European Commission’s report paints a bright picture for Malta. It acknowledges areas for improvement but underscores the country’s success in many key areas.

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