Minister for Finance Edward Scicluna said that the theme of the upcoming 2019 Budget would be that of fostering a quality culture.
Prof. Scicluna was discussing the economic and financial outlook of the economy and the prospects for the upcoming Budget 2019 with the Malta Council for Economic and Social Development (MCESD).
He highlighted Malta’s economic and fiscal achievements to date, including above-average economic growth, and a well-contained inflation rate. He mentioned that Government had achieved and exceeded the national EU 2020 target employment rate of 70 per cent.
The Minister remarked that the supply of foreign labour has eased the problem of labour shortages in certain sectors, as well as contributing positively towards Malta’s economic growth. Nonetheless, he said that the quality of the labour force would continue to be monitored, and skill mismatches in Malta’s labour market tackled.
Parliamentary Secretary for European Funds and Social Dialogue Aaron Farrugia noted that the upcoming year is expected to be a challenging one for a number of reasons, including the EU budget negotiations, as well as a slowdown of the EU institutions as a result of the MEP elections. He said that the pre-budget meetings are focused on a long-term budget which takes into consideration ever-changing realities, including the future of work, the workplace, and the fourth industrial revolution.