Last Updated on Tuesday, 24 January, 2023 at 12:34 pm by Andre Camilleri
The European Union operational programmes and plans allocated for Malta from 2021-2027 were launched today at the MFCC in Ta’ Qali.
During the launch, Prime Minister Robert Abela stated that this is the largest allocation of EU funds that Malta has ever received, which was agreed after intense negotiations and discussions, and is aimed at making a tangible difference over the next decade as it will be used to enhance the investment in our people.
“We will continue to build on our country’s economic stability and the successes we have had in recent years. Our efforts will be enabled further by the largest allocation of EU funds ever received since we became an EU member state,” the Prime Minister said, as he also outlined the challenges Malta faced to obtain more EU funds in the light of the economic success the country has enjoyed in recent years. Abela said that the Cohesion Funds allocated to Malta have made our economy more competitive and sustainable whilst accelerating our green and digital transition.
Abela referred to a number of other areas over and above the digital and environmental, and highlighted the increased allocation of EU funds towards Gozo, making public and mental health more resilient, education; including investment in vocational education, an improved tourism product, and investment in agriculture and fisheries. With reference to the environment, he stated that Malta will be investing EU funds in Natura 2000 sites, to create more parks and gardens for families to enjoy, in water management plans, and in projects that will provide cleaner aid such as the shore-to-ship project and the new interconnector.
The Prime Minister said that this largest package of EU funds, together with all the investment being carried out in our people, will ensure that we continue improving the quality of life of the Maltese and Gozitan citizens whilst working on our long-term plan, and incentivising businesses by investing further in the digital sector.
The launch was also addressed by the Minister for the Economy, European Funds and Lands, Silvio Schembri, who said that this package of EU funds is crucial as, together with the government’s plan, it will support our efforts to build a strong economy for the future. “These funds will enable us to help small and medium enterprises invest in innovative projects to improve their products or services, whilst ensuring sustainability. We want Malta to continue having an environmental conscience whilst safeguarding and improving the aesthetics of our heritage. In terms of the social sector, we will use these funds to make sure that each and every person in this country will have opportunities made available to them. These funds will also be used in substantial infrastructural projects that will lead to positive change in our country,” Minister Schembri commented.
The European Commissioner for Cohesion and Reforms Elisa Ferreira (in photo with PM Abela) said that she was delighted to be in Malta to celebrate the new generation of cohesion investments, which are a strong signal of the European Union’s support and solidarity. “This funding will help Malta and the Maltese people build a modern, green, energy efficient, innovative, and competitive economy that leaves no person behind. We have designed these investment priorities together, in a close partnership between the national authorities and stakeholders and the European Commission, and together we will make them work for the future of Malta, and the future of Europe.”
Parliamentary Secretary for European Funds Chris Bonett said that EU funds have enabled change and modernisation of our country. He added that, more than ever before, the Maltese public will have more access to EU funds to be able to achieve personal goals. “We are convinced that our promise to provide an improved quality of life to our citizens will be delivered through these EU funds. Over the next seven years, we will be giving people more access to EU funds than ever before, so that the EU funds are brought closer to the citizens themselves,” Dr Bonett said.
Before the launch of the European Union operational programmes and plans, a meeting between Prime Minister Robert Abela and EU Commissioner for Cohesion and Reforms Elisa Ferreira was held at Auberge de Castille.