Covid-19: 4th Financial Aid Package Announced

On the 8th June 2020, the Prime Minister of Malta, Dr. Robert Abela, has announced a plan to regenerate the economy following the impact of COVID-19 on the country. 

The plan is based on the three main pillars with the objectives being:

  1. Reducing business costs;
  2. Enhancing domestic demand; and
  3. Supporting employment.

 The main incentives were the following: 

1. Wage Supplement Scheme

Wage Supplements that have been made available by the government at the beginning of the pandemic will be further extended to September 2020 as follows.  In the months of July, August, and September the wage supplements will be granted as follows:

  • In full at existing rates for businesses operating in the tourism industry;
  • At €600 per full-timer and €375 per part-timers for other industries which had been classified under Annex A;
  • At Annex B rates for that business which have now opened their doors to their customers; and
  • Students and pensioners who are working on a part-time basis, who were previously excluded, will now be eligible for the wage supplement scheme

2. Tax deferral scheme

The tax deferral scheme which was introduced in March will be extended to August 2020

3. Business rent costs and water & electricity bills 

Certain businesses may benefit from a subsidy of €2,500 to subsidise their rental expense 50% of their water and electricity costs up to a maximum of €1,500 per business

4. Taxes on immovable property

Final taxes on the sale of immovable property will be reduced from 8% to 5%, whist stamp duty levied on the acquisition of immovable property will be 1.5%.  These reductions will apply to properties with values below €400,000 and contracts signed until March 2021

5. Fuel prices

Diesel and petrol prices will be reduced by €0.07 per litre

6. Vouchers

Each individual who is of 16 years of age or more will receive a voucher of €100 which can be used to the extent of 80% at hotels, restaurants and bars and 20% at other establishments which have been hit negatively by COVID 19

7. Wedding costs

A maximum of €2,000 per couple will be granted to those couples who had to postpone their weddings during the pandemic

8. In-work benefit

The in-work benefit will be extended to include more low income families and those who are already under the scheme will be given a grant of €250

9. NGOs and homes for the elderly

NGOs whose income was affected by the pandemic and the homes for the elderly will benefit from a fund specifically created by the government

10. Micro Invest Tax credits

30% up to a maximum of €2,000 of the micro invest credits will be converted into a grant.  The maximum increases to €2,500 for businesses operating in Gozo and those owned by females

11. Skills development scheme 

A fund will be set up for businesses employing less than 50 employees on in-house training

12. Business re-engineering 

Malta Enterprise will also be running a scheme to help companies re-engineer and re-structure their business models, with €5,000 per business being reserved for consultancy services.

13. Shipping business

A 33% refund of port charges will be given to ships which import goods to Malta and 10% refund to ships which export goods out of Malta

14. Exhibition costs

Businesses that had the intention to participate in an international trade fair that was cancelled because of Covid-19 will receive an 80% refund.

15. Export credit guarantee scheme 

This scheme will be launched for the development of new markets

16. Environment-friendly equipment

Contractors will receive €200.000 which invest in such equipment

17. Malta Development Bank

Malta Development Bank will step in to underwrite any bonds which are not sold when these mature.