British citizens in Malta will be able to apply for a preferential 10-year residency permit in the event of a no-deal Brexit, allowing them to continue working and studying in Malta, Prime Minister Joseph Muscat said.
Speaking at a press conference in which he outlined the various measures and preparations Malta was making in the eventuality of a no-deal Brexit, Dr Muscat said that the 10-year residency permit would give British citizens living and working in Malta peace of mind. No payment will be requested for the new residence permit.
British citizens will be afforded special status, not as EU residents, but different to third-country nationals. UK nationals will also continue to be able to vote in local elections.
Around 13,000 UK nationals live in Malta, with 5,000 active in the labour market.
During the press conference, Dr Muscat outlined various other measures Malta was considering in the event of a no-deal Brexit, mentioning, among other things, border checks at the airport and medical imports.
He said that Malta was considering a preferential track at the airport for UK and other citizens, such as European Economic Area countries.
“Politically, Malta wants to show that it is a friendly place for British citizens,” Dr Muscat insisted.
A helpline in Malta and the UK will be launched from Monday for any questions UK nationals may have linked to Brexit.