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The Corporate Immigration Law Review – Malta

By July 4, 2017December 1st, 2023No Comments

Introduction to the Immigration Framework in Malta

Immigration and citizenship have evolved in Malta since it became independent in 1964. The Maltese government throughout the years has introduced various schemes on immigration with the main aim of attracting investment or high net worth individuals to Malta. More often than not the purchase or renting of property have been included in these schemes to give an obvious boost to the construction industry in Malta. In 2014 a new scheme was introduced for the acquisition of citizenship, the Individual Investor Programme (IIP), which has undergone a rough passage into Maltese legislation; however, today it enjoys the approval of the European Commission.

Legislation and policy

The central government is the regulator in Malta on all issues concerning citizenship and immigration. The regulator with regard to citizenship and the IIP (see Section III.iii, infra), is the recently established entity Identity Malta. Prior to the introduction of the IIP, applicants for citizenship were processed by a department within the Prime Minister’s Office. This department still exists and processes all applications for citizenship other than the IIP. The IIP regulator is Identity Malta.

With regard to residency, the Global Residence Scheme is regulated by the tax authorities in Malta. This Scheme is primarily a tax scheme and therefore the Director General (Inland Revenue) is the authority that accepts applications. On the other hand work permits are issued by the Employment and Training Corporation, which is the regulator in Malta for most employment registrations. Therefore, persons applying for registration of employment must do so to the Employment and Training Corporation (ETC); consequently, third-country nationals seeking permission to work in Malta must apply to the ETC. 

International Treaty Obligations

Malta is a member of both the European Union (EU) and the European Economic Area (EEA), which confer immigration and employment benefits on nationals of Member States and also create immigration rights for certain foreign nationals. In addition, Malta is party to the Schengen Agreement, which established open borders and a common short-term visitor regime among signatory countries. 

Read the full article on the seventh edition of the Corporate Immigration Law Review by clicking here

Dr. Malcolm Mifsud


Mifsud & Mifsud Advocates.