Social and other measures

"Inclusion of contributions paid after retirement for pension calculation"



Social Measures

Pensions

  • The minimum retirement pension is being increased by €2 per week.
  • The first €2,066 of a service pension is not taken into account in reducing the retirement pension.
  • Contributions paid by pensioners who continue to work after reaching their pension age, will be taken into consideration in calculating the pension as from the age of 65.

 

Other social measures

  • Re-issue of Savings Bonds for pensioners at better market interest rates.
  • Allocation of €11 million for the continuation of the fund created to cater for inequalities suffered by persons in the past such as ex-employees of the Malta Electricity Board, police, etc.
  • €50m investment for the construction of almost 700 social housing units.
  • Widening of the thresholds for subsidies to persons living in rented property, including special thresholds for persons who are 65 years and over.
  • Approximately 200 new applications for a scheme which increases the stock of property being rented to the Housing Authority for the purposes of allocation to persons in need of social housing.
  • The Housing Authority will be offering financial assistance of up to a maximum of €25,000 for the first 100 unutilised private properties where an application for assistance is made for the renovation and rehabilitation thereof. Such assistance will be granted on the basis that the property being regenerated is rented out to the Housing Authority at advantageous rates for a 10 year period. This will in turn be used by the Authority for social housing purposes.
  • In-Work Benefit rate increased from €350 to €450 yearly per child where only one parent is in employment. Increase in the community worker scheme of €200 per month.
  • Additional benefit of €8.15 per week to the Increased Carers Allowance will not be taken into consideration in the means testing calculation for other benefits.
  • Maximum aid of €10,000 for expenses incurred for adopting foreign children (this aid will also apply to those who are currently undergoing this process).
  • The special allowance for orphans will also be applicable to those in employment. 
  • Installations of lifts in 109 blocks of Government rented apartments.
  • Proposal for a white paper addressing issues related to rental agreements, including a proposal for the obligatory registration of rental contracts.
  • A grant of €300 will be paid to each person who is 75 years and over and still living in his/ her own household.
  • Measures to incentivise elderly persons residing in retirement homes to relinquish their right over property rented from the Government.
  • The Housing Authority has entered into an agreement with APS Bank to provide loans to 100 prospective owners to enable them to buy their own residential property. Arrangements with Bank of Valletta shall also be introduced to enable 300 more applicants to acquire their residential property.
  • The Foster Care Allowance will increase to €100 (from the current €70) per week. 
  • As from 2018, widowers who work and receive a contributory pension at the same time will be entitled to receive sickness benefits.

Measures relating to employment

  • Employees will benefit from an additional day of leave.
  • Employees earning a minimum wage will receive a mandatory raise of €3 per week during the second year of employment and an increase of €6 per week during the third year of employment.

 

Property measures

  • Individuals buying and restoring property within Urban Conservation Areas or any other property scheduled within the first or second grade will continue benefitting from a refund of certain expenses incurred in restoring the property.
  • A new scheme will be introduced to redeem emphyteusis which will soon expire.
  • The concept of Equity Release Facilities will also be introduced in Malta, where property owners can plan ahead to secure regular income as a return on their property after retirement age.

 

Gozo

  • Entrepreneurs who offer a minimum of a 3 year full time contract of employment in Gozo to a Gozitan employee, will receive a 30% refund (up to a maximum of €6,000) calculated on the employee’s average wage.
  • Gozitan entrepreneurs operating in the tourism industry will be allocated funds aimed at improving tourist establishments, including other projects aimed at embellishing Gozo.
  • New desalination plant in Gozo.
  • Agreement with Vitals Global Healthcare for a new hospital in Gozo.

 

Transport

  • Persons between 16 and 20 years old will be granted one year of free public transport.
  • It is expected that free school transport to and from Church and Independent schools will be introduced in 2018/2019.
  • The scheme providing incentives for investment in bicycle racks will be extended by another year.
  • Various incentives aimed at reducing traffic congestion and pollution will be introduced such as the introduction of the new concept of “Share the Road” for bicycle users, increased safety measures targeted at motorists and incentives aimed at investing in eco-friendly vehicles.
  • No registration tax on eco-friendly vehicles including vehicles operated by battery with a minimum range of 80km. Furthermore no road licence will be paid on such vehicles during the first five years from registration date.
  • Further extension to scrappage schemes and grants in respect of vehicles converted from petrol to gas.
  • A grant of a maximum of €10,000 will be awarded to individuals and companies investing in wheelchair accessible taxis. A fund of €100,000 will be allocated in this regard.
  • An ex-gratia payment will be given to all persons who registered a new vehicle in 2007.
  • Accessibility will be increased in ferry terminals and bus stops.
  • Upgrading of bus shelters and roads.

 

Environment

  • Investment of over €150 million in waste conversion technology. Initiative to plant a tree for every child born.
  • Various investments in cleaner energy sources (solar farms, alternative energy, implementation of new gas pipeline).
  • Extension of the collection of organic waste to all the localities, introduction of higher penalties to encourage cleanliness and introduction of a refund on the return of plastic and glass bottles.
  • Free consultations to assist families in reducing their water and electricity consumption.

 

Education

  • In 2018, the Government will absorb half the fees for SEC and MATSEC exams. From 2019, these examinations will be free of charge.
  • Extension of the ‘One tablet per child’ initiative.
  • Extension of ‘club 3-16’ to further incentivise women to join the workforce.

 

Health

  • Investment in two new primary health centres and refurbishing of existing ones.
  • New Out-Patients block and parking facilities at Mater Dei through Private Public Partnership. Strengthening of the law regulating the treatment of IVF.
  • A number of training initiatives aimed at improving competences in the pharmaceutical industry will be implemented.

 

Other

  • Introduction of an offsetting system for Maltese companies, allowing them to offset certain payments due to and from the Maltese government.
  • Assistance is to be provided to start-ups investing in blockchain technology.

Contact us

Neville Gatt

Neville Gatt

Head of Tax, PwC Malta

Tel: +356 2564 6791

David Ferry

David Ferry

Tax Partner, PwC Malta

Tel: +356 2564 6897

Bernard Attard

Bernard Attard

Tax Partner, PwC Malta

Tel: +356 2564 6726

Mirko Rapa

Mirko Rapa

Tax Partner, PwC Malta

Tel: +356 2564 6896

Steve Gingell

Steve Gingell

Tax Partner, PwC Malta

Tel: +356 2564 6896

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