Business In Malta
Geography & Climate
The Maltese Archipelago is made up of three Islands with a total area of 316 km², and is strategically situated in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea, approximately 80 km south of Sicily – Italy. Malta, with an area of 246 km², is the main island of this Archipelago that also comprises the islands of Gozo and Comino.
The climate of Malta is typically Mediterranean, with dry warm summers and mild winters. Temperatures range from a maximum of approximately 30°C (87°F) in summer to a minimum of 9°C (49°F) in winter. Annual rainfall averages 590 mm.
Maltese history is very rich and colourful and is indeed impressive considering the size of the islands. The existence of man in Malta dates back from circa 5,000 BC and Neolithic temples still survive from this era, together with others from later periods. The Phoenicians, Carthaginians and the Romans succeeded each other in establishing a base in Malta. It was during the Roman era that St. Paul was shipwrecked on the Maltese Islands and converted the Islanders to Christianity. The Byzantines who followed the Romans were in turn ousted by the Arabs in 870 AD. In 1090, Malta became part of the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies and in 1530 was ceded to the Order of St. John of Jerusalem. In 1798, Napoleon Bonaparte put an end to the rule of the Order, but in 1800 Malta with the help of the British succeeded in liberating itself from the French. Later, Malta became a British colony by virtue of the Treaty of Amiens in 1814. Malta finally became politically independent within the British Commonwealth in 1964 and a Republic in 1974. Malta joined the E.U. on 1 May 2004.
The total population of Malta and Gozo is approximately 425,384 people (2013).
The President is the Head of State of Malta and is elected by Parliament. The responsibility for enacting laws lies with Parliament, which is made up of a House of Representatives whose members are elected every 5 years through General Elections based on the principle of proportional representation.
Malta has its own language – Maltese, which together with English is used in official correspondence and to conduct business activities. Being so close to Italy, Italian is also widely spoken.
The basic unit of currency is the Euro.
The Maltese economy has undergone a great transformation during the last 25 years, with the manufacturing and tourism industries going from strength to strength despite the upheavals in the international scene, which have so badly affected economies worldwide. Malta’s Gross Domestic Product has had a steady increase throughout these last years. Apart from tourism, which is the backbone of the Maltese economy, international trade, and in particular exports, represent Malta’s economic lifeline. Proof of this is the recent tax legislation that alleviates the tax burden on companies engaged in international trade and exports. Nearly 70% of imports and visible exports are made to European Union countries, of which Malta is a member. Certain manufactured products enjoy customs free entry into the United States of America under the General System of Preferences.