Malta Chamber President, Perit David Xuereb, as well as Deputy President Marisa Xuereb both made contributions to the Economic Report on the future of the economy post-COVID 19 recently published by SEED. The report features contributions from social partners, business leaders, experts, and includes a consumer sentiment survey with 385 respondents.
In the article titled ‘National level recommendations: a vision for Malta’, Chamber President Perit David Xuereb provided the employer organisation’s economic suggestions on a national and local level, which emerged following research interviews which the Chamber conducted with 36 industry leaders and social partners.
- Need for a vision
- Quality and not quantity
- Environmental focus
- Institutional quality
- Digital transformation
- Education & skills
Perit Xuereb remarked that “The main issue in all of this is the factor of the unknown. We do not know when the economy is going to start recovering, and many assumptions are being made while sailing through this difficult time.”
“During this time of economic crisis, companies should be acknowledging that there is a new norm in the economy, that this will stay with us post-COVID and hence all should invest in developing intelligent business by digging deep into the values of their market and think outside the box. The foundation of the ‘new’ economy post COVID should be to aim at market sensitivity centred on Value and supported by digital transformation whilst ensuring sustainability,” he continued.
Moreover, the Chamber President concluded that “Our main recommendation is for the Government to develop a future-focused vision for the country, one which seeks to rebuild post-COVID-19 and to prepare ourselves for the economy of tomorrow and what is expected to be a new normal.”
In a piece titled ‘Education and opportunity: the COVID-19 impact and post-COVID-19 scenario’, Chamber Deputy President Ms Marisa Xuereb explored the difficulties, as well as the benefits, which the COVID-19 situation brought to light, with regards to the education sector. These include the lack of preparedness, relating to both infrastructure and human resources, and the lack of accessibility experienced by many institutions.
Ms Xuereb noted that this situation “verified the extent to which national projects such as the ‘tablet for every child’ in upper primary school years contributed to enhancing teaching and learning.” At the same time, it also tested the reliability of other supporting online platforms already in use, exposed many teaching professionals and learners of all ages to new technologies, and “necessitated the accelerated development of skills sets that were previously underused and potentially undervalued in an educational setting.”
Ms Xuereb pointed out that the largest challenge was experienced when new online resources had to be implemented in larger school and college setups, “where differences in the readiness of teaching professionals and in the levels of accessibility within the homes of students from various socio-economic backgrounds can be very wide.”
“The post COVID-19 world of education is certainly full of opportunities for both teaching and learning that will map the future of the education profession, alter the budgets of educational institutions and re-dimension education at all levels and for all learners,” she said in her concluding remarks.