Malta plans on capitalising on commercial activities related to outer space

11th September 2019 

Attracting companies operating in the space industry, strengthening AI, blockchain technologies and online gaming all form part of the Government’s priorities for Budget 2020.

Looking beyond gaming and blockchain, the Government said that the space sector holds various opportunities and investing in this area “provides national and commercial interests”.

In a pre-budget document priority area entitled “A hub for innovative technology,” the Government laid out its plans to further consolidate Malta’s position as an island attractive to innovative technologies in general.

With regards commercial activities related to outer space, the Government wrote that its “aim is to create a regulatory framework and incentives which improves Malta’s attractiveness and capability to capitalise upon commercial activities related to [sic] outer space”.

While Malta is not expected to send any astronauts to space any time soon, it appears that plans are in the works to attract foreign investment of companies operating in the sphere. This will serve to position Malta “as a place where companies operating in the space industry can operate from, generating jobs and promoting investment”.

Turning to more established avenues of technology in Malta, the Government will be giving Artificial Intelligence a greater focus. The pre-budget document states that the Government “is working on assessing how regulatory and fiscal measures can be used to strengthen Malta’s appeal as a hub for foreign investment in this sector, while identifying the underlying skill base and infrastructure needed to support AI.”

It said that AI will complement blockchain, while on the latter issue the licensing of Malta’s Virtual Financial Asset agents is likely to “encourage further private investment” in turn “creating not only high skilled employment but also bringing knowledge and other related positive externalities”.

Onto the mammoth Online Gaming sector, Government highlighted how in “the coming months the development of E-Sports will be intense as this sector can offer Malta the opportunity to develop niche tourism segments with global exposure opportunities”.