Minister within the Office of the Prime Minister Carmelo Abela announced that Mr James Pearsall will be appointed Chairperson of the Malta Council for Economic and Social Development (MCESD). Mr Pearsall was nominated by the Government after full consultation with the social partners members within the Council.
James Pearsall will take over the role at the end of July, with this serving as a transition period until then. Pearsall will be the sixth chairperson of the MCESD.
Minister Carmelo Abela thanked Mr John Bencini for serving as Chairperson of the MCESD for seven years. Many successes have been achieved in recent years, including the agreement on the minimum wage and recently a social pact on aid to workers during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Whilst Minister Abela congratulated Mr Pearsall on his appointment, he remarked that he is convinced that Mr Pearsall will be making his contribution to further strengthening social dialogue in the interest of the common good. Mr Pearsall has experience in both trade unionism and in administration.
The Minister said that with this appointment, the MCESD should go further and should strengthen its structures so that the social partners continue to find common ground on which to work together.
Minister Abela said: “We need to continue renewing ourselves as a council both in the way we work and in the way the discussion takes place. I am confident that under Mr Pearsall’s leadership we will have stronger debates which will consider what needs to be done in the future as well as the current challenges such as changes in the employment law. Another discussion that needs to take place concerns the next steps for the economy of our country and those economic activities that our country should focus more on. Within the MCESD, we are not just debating economic development but also social development; all that affects our lives in its various aspects. I am convinced that we will continue to strengthen this structure under Mr Pearsall’s leadership—also in terms of its internal administration—in order to enable the MCESD to guide government in the best manner possible”.
In his comments, Mr Pearsall thanked the Minister and the Prime Minister for their trust. He said that “the next step is to enable consultation to become a powerful tool. This can be achieved if each entity within the Council is better prepared, as even the MCESD itself will start presenting research-based topics for discussion, particularly in relation to the well-being of citizens, this with the aim of being inclusive and allowing all to contribute to the economy. A strong social environment cannot be achieved without a prosperous economy. We should now analyse all the lessons learnt during the COVID-19 pandemic. The MCESD gave its contribution and participated in the economic regeneration plan. It is now the time to work together, with the means, with the strength, with all the necessary expertise and experience of both employers and employees, so that we join our efforts and focus our discussions on how to build a better country”.
Biographical Note – James Pearsall
Mr James Pearsall started his career at Malta Drydocks and continued working for many years in the field of vocational training including the opening of vocational schools, as well as participating fully in the establishment of MCAST where he retired from his position as one of the directors at the Institute of Building and Construction Engineering. Mr Pearsall gave his contribution to the trade union field where he served for years as President of the General Workers Unions and through which he was also a member of the MCESD.
Mr Pearsall holds a Master’s degree in HR Training & Performance Management as well as a Diploma in Social Studies. He is part of the IPS educational board of the Institute of Public Service, which offers continuous professional training to all public service employees. For many years, he has been contributing to the work of the Industrial Tribunal.