Output of Malta’s agricultural sector decreased by €5.7 million in 2020

Photo by Tessa Mercieca (MaYA Foundation)

Last Updated on Thursday, 16 September, 2021 at 3:55 pm by Andre Camilleri

The total output of Malta’s agricultural sector decreased by 4.5% – equivalent to around €5.7 million – during last year, data issued by the National Statistics Office (NSO) shows. 

Provisional estimates for the year 2020 indicate that the total output of the agricultural sector in Malta decreased by 4.5 per cent to €120.7 million, whereas the gross value added generated by this economic activity fell by 12.9 per cent to €53.1 million. 

Indeed, it transpired that, during the year under review, the expenditure incurred by the agricultural sector rose by 3.2 per cent while the revenue emanating through the generated output fell, thus impinging adversely on the registered gross value added of the sector. 

Notwithstanding this, however, the costs associated with the depreciation of fixed capital declined by 1.2 per cent to a total of €6.7 million; whereas the total compensation paid to employees for their labour increased by 3.7 per cent to a total wage bill of €4.9 million. 

During 2020, the sector was once again financially assisted by a range of EU-funded programmes which amounted to €26.2 million, a marginal increase of 0.6 per cent over the relative sum distributed in the preceding year. 

Nonetheless, this yearly provision was insufficient to sustain the net operating surplus recorded in recent years which fell by 10.3 per cent to €67.7 million. Upon adding up the latter surplus to the negative net property income of €1.0 million registered in 2020, the net entrepreneurial income attributable to the agricultural sector in Malta is estimated to have dropped by 10.4 per cent to €66.7 million. 

When viewed by the various activities, the agricultural sector registered decreases in crop cultivation, products derived from secondary activities as well as livestock meat products of 12.1 per cent, 2.7 per cent and 2.4 per cent respectively. 

An increase of 4.6 per cent was nevertheless recorded in the output of various animal products. 

Intermediate consumption, which measures specific expenses born by this economic activity, recorded increases in various overheads and livestock feeding stuffs of 4.7 per cent and 3.2 per cent respectively. Other increases were registered in energy and fuel costs and crop cultivation expenses of 1.9 per cent and 0.9 per cent respectively.

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