ME PoV Spring 2016 issue

With its warm climate, numerous recreational areas, and architectural and historical monuments (including three UNESCO World Heritage Sites), what’s not to like? Nothing it seems. Following its entry into the European Union, Malta has become the small powerhouse that packs a big punch.

Malta is ready for business

Located in the middle of the Mediterranean and on the southern tip of the European Union (EU), Malta is a hidden gem not just for visitors, but also for business operators seeking an entry into, or exit from the EU.

Malta is a small European country with a growing reputation for fast forward thinking. The island is quickly becoming known as a flexible and reliable location from which to do business. Enterprising policy makers, a mature and developed legal system, a competitive tax environment and an adaptable, highly skilled English-speaking workforce position Malta as a regional center of excellence. 

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Malta is turning the European Union’s challenging asset management regulatory landscape into a competitive advantage for your business.

A main objective of the European Union (EU) is to create a level playing field across the entire Union. This is especially evident in the asset management sphere. The Union’s directives and regulations ensure that collective investment schemes, asset managers and regulated investment services companies created in any of the member states are regulated under a uniform set of rules, while benefitting from the opportunity to operate within the entire Union. Effectively, a fund or asset manager incorporated and regulated in an EU member state can operate throughout the entire Union. The objective is to eliminate jurisdiction shopping by having the same regulatory framework apply, irrespective of the jurisdiction in which the entity is incorporated and regulated.

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Taking up residence in Malta

In view of its strategic geographic location in the heart of the Mediterranean and its highly regulated business and banking infrastructure, Malta has, over the last two decades, become an international financial services center of high repute.

In 2004 and 2008 Malta became a full member of both the European Union and the Eurozone respectively, events which have both contributed to the island’s growth from a local and international perspective. This growth has been noted on various occasions when Malta has ranked highly on both standard of living and business jurisdiction indexes.

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A door to the EU

Malta, which became a member of the European Union (EU) in 2004, has since introduced a citizenship program, entitled the Malta Individual Investor Programme (MIIP). The program grants Maltese citizenship–and hence EU citizenship–by investment and by means of the issue of a certificate of naturalization for the main applicant, and the eligible dependents thereof, following the satisfactory conclusion of a thorough and rigid due diligence process and the satisfaction by the main applicant of a number of conditions. The said conditions include the payment of a non-refundable financial contribution to the economic development of Malta; investment in, or rental of, immovable property situated in Malta; local investment; and a Malta residency requirement.

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