Author: Ivan Martin

Prime Minister Robert Abela has asked Speaker Anġlu Farrugia to reconvene Parliament on Friday morning to discuss the Daphne Caruana Galizia inquiry report, which he received on Thursday. In a statement, the government said it will be publishing the report on Thursday (today). The Court Services Agency also said, in another statement, it will be publishing the report, as well as submission and witness notes, on the Department of Information website today. The inquiry had to establish whether the state may have prevented the murder of Daphne Caruana Galizia.  According to rules governing public inquiries, the panel must first give…

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A parliamentary committee investigating alleged ethical breaches by MP Rosianne Cutajar will met again this morning, two weeks after Speaker Anġlu Farrugia stormed out of the last meeting without agreeing on a way forward. The committee’s members disagree on who should be brought to testify and spent much of their last meeting bickering. Farrugia, who chairs the committee, walked out without setting a date for the next meeting or reaching agreement on who should testify.  The meeting is now being held on Thursday (today) at 8.30am to discuss a way forward. The bipartisan committee for standards in public life is…

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Wage supplements for businesses hit by the pandemic will be tapered between August and the end of the year, according to a presentation given to social partners this week.   Sources told Times of Malta that the government plans to cut the different supplements down by as much as a third, across two phases starting next week and going on until the end of the year.    Those hardest hit will continue to receive the top tier of support: €800 per employee.  The tapering off plan was presented to the Malta Council for Economic and Social Development during a confidential…

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Two-thirds of Maltese say they are uncomfortable travelling due to the pandemic, a survey commissioned by Times of Malta has found.  The survey was conducted this month following a spike in confirmed coronavirus cases that prompted the authorities to introduce stricter travel rules. The survey found that while 55% of respondents are “not comfortable at all” with travelling right now, a further 9% say they are “rather uncomfortable”. On the other hand, around a fifth of respondents say they are ‘ok’ with travelling. Some 7% said they are “rather comfortable” travelling and 11% say they are “very comfortable” travelling.  The…

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IIP

Southern towns back scheme, while Gozitans are sceptical Middle-aged are passport scheme’s biggest backers Support declines with higher levels of education Malta is split on whether the controversial cash-for-passports scheme should be scrapped, a survey commission by Times of Malta has found.   The survey found that while 38% of respondents support selling passports to wealthy foreign investors, 37% do not.  A quarter of respondents meanwhile, did not give a final position on the matter, either saying they are unsure (12%), don’t know enough about the subject (10%), or don’t want to say (3%).   These non-responses, one in every…

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From Spotify to Netflix, artificial intelligence is curating our personalised music and movie playlists.  It is blending our likes, shares, and comments to decide what we see, and what we don’t see, on social media.   But it can also be used to plug the gaps in our understanding of some of the biggest questions put out to public opinion.  In fact, just last year it was used to accurately predict Joe Biden’s US presidential election victory over incumbent Donald Trump.    In a first for opinion polling in Malta, machine learning has now been used to predict how the…

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Malta has requested access to a new cache of data on offshore holdings in Dubai in a bid to crack down on large-scale tax evasion and financial crime.  The request, for data on any Maltese passport holders, was sent to the German government by Maltese tax officials this week after Berlin last month purchased data on millions of international taxpayers from an anonymous source in Dubai.  Two high-level Maltese government sources told Times of Malta that the move was aimed at uncovering potential Maltese tax dodgers who hide their wealth overseas, with a particular focus on high-net-worth individuals.  Maltese authorities…

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Labour has massive lead over PN  Abela leads Grech on trust by 27 percentage points 78% say they will stick to their 2017 vote  Many PN voters do not name a favoured candidate The Labour Party would win a general election by more than 50,000 votes, securing 57% of the electorate’s support if a vote were to be held today, a survey commissioned by Times of Malta has found.   The gap is 3.7% wider than the 2017 general election result that saw Labour returned to power with a historic majority.    The survey found the Nationalist Party would secure…

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Elderly people are facing financial abuse, including by their own family members who help themselves to their savings, deposits and bank cards, a senior banker has warned.  Simon Vaughan Johnson, who heads HSBC’s Malta operations, told financial practitioners earlier this month that he had been taken aback when he first learnt of the phenomenon. He had arrived on the island in 2020 and started trying to familiarise himself with the culture of Maltese banking ahead of his appointment as HSBC Malta chief executive. “I was quite surprised to find that this Mediterranean island has a problem of what I believe…

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Malta is “redoubling its efforts” to get off the grey list of untrustworthy financial jurisdictions, Prime Minister Robert Abela said on Wednesday.   Abela said that while the island now has a strong legal and regulatory framework, having implemented a number of reforms in recent months, it must now prove that these rules are being enforced by the authorities.   “We are redoubling national efforts to implement reforms, and will be boosting resources, to the courts, prosecutorial and law enforcement entities,” Abela said.   The government will be allocating €10 million to strengthen a number of national institutions, the digitalisation…

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