Prime Minister Joseph Muscat said that the outlook for Malta’s property sector remained sustainable, but an upcoming Government White Paper on the subject of rent could prove to be ‘controversial’.
Dr Muscat was addressing the Malta Developers Association (MDA) in a meeting during which the Association presented its proposals for the 2019 Budget.
Quoting a 2017 KPMG report commissioned by the same MDA, Dr Muscat said that wealth was increasing thanks to the property sector, especially considering the fact that about 80 per cent of Maltese people are home owners.
However, he said that about 20 per cent of the population were not in a position to buy their own home, and that these people also had to have housing they could afford, particularly in light of the boom that the letting sector has experienced in recent years.
Dr Muscat said that the upcoming White Paper that would be presented by Government on the subject of rent could be controversial, however this initiative had to be a collaborative effort to reap the desired results.
He said that while the free market had to remain free, there had to be regulations where, for instance, every rent contract had to be registered, a measure which would create the basis for a structure.
A recent report from global property consultancy Knight Frank shows that Malta has pulled ahead of Hong Kong to become the world’s fastest-growing housing market.