- European Commission issues recommendation on Malta
- Malta Enterprise: updates to the Quarantine Leave Scheme
- Commissioner for Revenue: settlement date for taxes deferred in terms of the COVID-19 Fiscal Assistance Scheme
- Malta Development Bank: update to accredited commercial banks list
- Gozo Teleworking Scheme
1. International News
1. European Commission issues recommendation on Malta
The European Commission has published a recommendation on Malta for the European Council’s consideration. The recommendations issued by the European Commission are the following:
- In line with the general escape clause, Malta should take all necessary measures to effectively address the pandemic, sustain the economy and support the ensuing recovery. When economic conditions allow, Malta should pursue fiscal policies aimed at achieving prudent medium-term fiscal positions and ensuring debt sustainability, while enhancing investment. Malta should also strengthen the resilience of the health system with regard to the health workforce, critical medical products and primary care.
- Malta should consolidate short-time work arrangements and ensure the adequacy of unemployment protection for all workers. Malta should strengthen the quality and inclusiveness of education and skills development.
- Malta should ensure effective implementation of liquidity support to affected businesses, including the self-employed. Malta should front-load mature public investment projects and promote private investment to foster economic recovery. Malta should focus investment on the green and digital transition, in particular on clean and efficient production and use of energy, sustainable transport, waste management, research and innovation.
- Malta should complete reforms addressing current shortcomings in institutional capacity and governance to enhance judicial independence. Malta should continue efforts to adequately assess and mitigate money laundering risks and to ensure effective enforcement of the anti-money laundering framework. Malta should step up action to address features of the tax system that facilitate aggressive tax planning by individuals and multinationals.
2. Administrative Notes
1. Malta Enterprise: updates to the Quarantine Leave Scheme
It has been clarified that applications for the Quarantine Leave Scheme are to be submitted by the employer within 30 days of the start of the quarantine of the individual. It has also been clarified that the Quarantine Leave Scheme does not apply to persons employed in the private sector, who after 27 March 2020, due to the impact of COVID-19 are not going to work because they are ordered by the Superintendent of Public Health not to leave their home, are not able to work from home and are not being paid by their employer during their absence from work.
2. Commissioner for Revenue: settlement date for taxes deferred in terms of the COVID-19 Fiscal Assistance Scheme
The Commissioner for Revenue has announced that the settlement date for taxes deferred in terms of the COVID-19 Fiscal Assistance scheme is 31 October 2020.
It is relevant to note that that applications for this scheme are currently closed, with the deadline having elapsed on 15 May 2020.
3. Malta Development Bank: update to accredited commercial banks list
Malta Development Bank have updated the list of accredited commercial banks offering facilities under the COVID-19 Guarantee Scheme and the COVID-19 Interest Rate Subsidy Scheme.
The updated list may be accessed here.
4. Gozo Teleworking Scheme
On 25 May 2020, the Minister for Gozo announced a Gozo Teleworking Scheme aimed at incentivising the work-life balance of Gozitan employees employed in the private sector in Malta. The Gozo Teleworking Scheme will provide aid to employers, based and registered in Malta, to offer their Gozitan resident employees the facility to work from home should their job-related tasks be equally fulfilled.
The Scheme grants aid to employers in the form of:
1. A financial grant spread over a 3-year period, paid proportionately on the number of days the employee is granted telework. The grant is up to a maximum of €10,000, in the form of a salary refund, to be spread over a 3-year period:
- Year 1 entitles 30% up to a maximum of €3,000
- Year 2 entitles 30% up to a maximum of €3,000
- Year 3 entitles 40% up to a maximum of €4,000
2. A one-time financial reimbursement per employee related to the Technological and Capital Investment to equip employees with the necessary tools to perform their tasks. The reimbursement is capped to the lower of €850 or 75% of the expenses incurred.
The Guidelines for the scheme may be accessed here.