The Malta Chamber of Commerce, Enterprise and Industry, FinanceMalta, the Institute of Financial Services Practitioners and the Gozo Business Chamber have welcomed the PANA Committee’s confirmation that the Maltese tax system is in line with current international and EU standards.
Furthermore, according to the Committee, Malta has transposed EU rules and respects OECD standards in terms of transparency, fight against tax fraud and money laundering.
In a co-joined statement, it was acknowledged that the PANA Committee’s testament of the Maltese tax system confirms that Malta is not a tax haven as it has been labeled by a number of ill-informed speakers from various EU countries as well as certain sectors of the international media.
The PANA Committee’s confirmation endorses Malta’s long-stated position that the country is and will remain committed to the international standards of transparency and effective exchange information through a broad network of EOI instruments with a significant number of jurisdictions. Suffice to mention in this regard that Malta’s public registry is open for scrutiny by anyone as the relevant data may be directly obtained from the Registry of Companies.
Equally so, Malta’s tax regime respects the required OECD standards where in its report issued in 2013, the OECD had confirmed that that the Malta tax authorities have broad access to information for exchange of information purposes pursuant to income tax laws, including bank and accounting information, stressing that “adequate rights and safeguards are in place to guarantee an effective exchange of information”.
It is important to point out that Malta’s tax system was discussed in detail and agreed to (in March and November 2006) with both the European Commission (as well as with DG Competition from a State Aid perspective) and with the Member States within the Code of Conduct Group which reviews tax measures to enable a determination as to whether they are harmful in terms of the Code of Conduct for Business taxation. In fact, Malta’s tax system is fully transparent and based on statutory rules rather than an administrative discretion as has been the case in certain jurisdictions. Equally so, it is equally important to mention that Malta’s offshore legislation was actually repealed in 1994 and all companies in Malta have to publish audited financial statements.
Malta’s exponential growth of the financial services industry and other key economic sectors is driven by a number of critical success factors but particularly lead by innovation, a robust operational infrastructure all within a dynamic business environment.
The country’s success is also driven by the accessibility and efficiency of the relevant regulatory authorities when it comes to processing applications for new operating licenses, the presence of comprehensive legal and regulatory frameworks to include the various innovations thereto, as well as the strong responsiveness of the industry practitioners to the requirements of international investors which has been found to be invariably efficient and highly competitive.
The Government and the industry are actively seeking to sustain and further strengthen the current level of economic growth through various initiatives revolving around the development of new sectors such as the Blockchain, Cryptocurrencies and Fintech amongst others.
The constituted bodies also called on all the stakeholders of the economy and the local media to work together for the common good of the industry. In so doing, the industry stakeholders will ensure that in the eyes on the international business community, Malta is viewed and well positioned as a serious jurisdiction, where its economic growth is driven by a sustained program of innovation and supported by the presence of a sophisticated business ecosystem.
These developments augur well for Malta’s ambition to sustain the achievement of significant economic success and continue to play an important regional and international role in this increasingly globalized business world.