The Maltese archipelago lies in the Mediterranean, 93 km south of Sicily and 288 km north of Africa. The Maltese archipelago consists of three islands: Malta, Gozo and Comino. The island of Malta is the largest of the three and is the cultural, commercial and administrative centre of the country. A population of 446,547 occupies an area of 316 square kilometers. This makes Malta one of the most densely populated countries in the world, as well as one of the smallest.
Malta’s sister islands, Gozo and Comino, are quite different. Gozo is a rural island with peaceful countryside and scenic waterside villages. Comino, which in the past served as a game reserve for the Knights of the Order of St John, is now a favourite destination for tourists who love to visit the Blue Lagoon.
The capital city of Malta is Valletta. It is the smallest capital city in the European Union. Referred to in Maltese as Il-Belt, the city, Valletta is essentially Baroque in its character. It is listed as a world heritage site by UNESCO. Valletta will be the European Capital of Culture in 2018.
Malta has a superb climate, with mild winters and hot summers. The sunny weather, along with the attractive beaches, exciting nightlife and 7,000 years of history make Malta one of the most popular tourist destinations in Europe.
The rich and unique history that Malta is so proud of, has left the island with an expansive, treasure trove of heritage. This covers thousands of years, including Pre-historic, Neolithic, Phoenician and Roman eras, and also under the rule of the Knights of St John and the British Empire. All these have coalesced together to create the unique heritage Malta boasts of, where the island becomes in itself a museum of truly compelling vignettes of great periods in Western history.
Such Pre-historic sites as Għar Dalam, with its ancient fossils of megafauna, and Neolithic temples of Ħaġar Qim and Imnajdra, are examples of Malta’s prehistoric heritage. From Antiquity, certain sites remain, of which the most famous are the Roman Villa, which showcases extremely well preserved mosaics and, close by, the catacombs. In the same area can be found the island’s old city, Mdina, built in around 700BC, boasting some of the finest views of the island. Apart from being the capital city and centre of activity in Malta, Valletta, founded in the 16th century, boasts the finest examples of Mannerist and Baroque architecture, Knights’ palaces and armoury, National Bibliothéque, Co-Cathedral of St John, and unparalleled views of the Grand Harbour.
In recent years, Malta’s cultural scene has flourished significantly. Valletta, Malta’s cultural centre, has become the teeming centre of this flourishing, especially in light of Malta being awarded the European Capital of Culture for 2018. The years leading to 2018 are building up into an impressive show of culture for Malta and the years beyond 2018. Malta's cultural calendar has been characterised by art exhibitions, dance and musical performances, theatre, music concerts, film screenings and festivals to suit all tastes, interests and passions.
With over 300 days of sunshine per year and its beautiful seas, Malta is traditionally known for its thriving tourism industry. Yet, since its independence in 1964 it has also developed a diversified, knowledge-based economy that has prospered within the country’s business-friendly environment.
Malta offers investors a competitive cost structure that compares very favourably with other EU Member States, Malta offers the possibility of operating within a sound economy and a politically and socially stable environment. The pro-business authorities also strive to create and nourish the right framework where private enterprise can thrive in its success.
A perfect hub for Europe, North Africa and the Middle East
Its strategic location at the heart of the Mediterranean and the excellent air and sea connections with nearby countries make Malta the perfect hub to easily access markets in the region.
Malta is accessible in two to three hours by air from most European cities. Frequent and direct flights to Malta from major European cities are readily available. Other frequent flights are also operated from North African and Middle East destinations. As an EU country, Malta's requirements on visas fall in line with EU policy. The Islands also form part of the Schengen travel area. Daily high speed catamaran services for passengers, cars and heavy vehicles connect Valletta, Malta and Sicily. Other ferry services connect Valletta with Italy and North Africa.
Favourable tax climate
Malta has one of the most favourable tax systems in the region. While corporate tax rate is 35%, this may effectively be reduced to 5% upon distribution of dividends. Additionally, Malta has over 60 double taxation agreements, thereby facilitating cross-border business with appropriate reliefs.
Besides the strong work ethic, efficiency and high productivity levels, workers in Malta are also characterised by their proficiency in a multitude of languages, their high standard of skills, as well as their adaptability and ability to learn quickly.
A safe and pleasant lifestyle complemented by a climate that has been consistently ranked among the best in the world mean that living and working in Malta is not only profitable, but also enjoyable.
Key sectors: Advanced manufacturing, financial services, healthcare and life sciences, ICT, transport and logistics.