Government committed to ensuring that Budget supports workers and their families, Robert Abela says

Last Updated on Tuesday, 17 October, 2023 at 11:21 am by Andre Camilleri

The Government is committed to ensuring that the Budget continues to support workers and their families whilst also focusing on strengthening a quality-based economy, the Prime Minister said following discussions with representatives from the General Workers’ Union.

The Office of the Prime Minister added that Abela said the Government is committed to providing aid to curb inflation.

Prime Minister Robert Abela met with workers during his visit to the General Soft Drinks factory where he discussed “various themes” with them including certain ideas and proposals they had, the OPM said. It continued that the discussions developed into an extensive meeting with the leadership of the GWU which is representing said workers.

The OPM said that the Prime Minister listened to the workers’ thoughts and comments, who remarked that continuous training helps them in the workplace and helps them get invested in their careers as more than “just a job”.

It said that discussion regarding skills occurred in light of the proposals for the upcoming 2024 budget put forward by the GWU which it said include measures in favour of improving the quality of the Maltese and Gozitan tourist product which is linked to the skills of hospitality workers. The Cabinet of Malta met last week and decided that tourism workers, “who are really needed in Malta,” will be required to go through a course before being given permission to work.

Mention was made of the Government’s aim to favour stability in energy prices, the OPM said, adding that this stability gives “peace of mind and certainty” to workers as well as businesses. It continued that this is being done in the context of a “strong labour market” in Malta where it said that the employment rate is almost five times higher than the average whilst also having the lowest unemployment rate in the Eurozone.

Abela said that this meeting was conducted in the context of a forecast by the International Monetary Fund which predicts the largest economic growth in Europe as well as the latest credit rating by DBRS Morningstar which gave the Maltese economy the highest rating.

The Prime Minister concluded by saying that Malta “must continue to have a strong economy to continue in the transition of important changes”.

Deputy Prime Minister Chris Fearne, Economy Minister Silvio Schembri and the Parliamentary Secretary for Social Dialogue Andy Ellul were also present for the meeting with the GWU.

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