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Thursday, October 30, 2014

Tax on rented residential properties in Malta reduced to 15%, backdated to Jan 1st. 2014

The tax charged on revenue from rented residential properties has been reduced from 35% to 15%.
Finance Minister Edward Scicluna said the measure was announced in the last Budget and was being brought in now, backdated to January 1.

He said the measure was aimed at reducing tax evasion by encouraging landlords to declare the income they made form rented properties. It would also encourage more people to rent vacant dwellings. The tax would be collected as a withholding tax.

Prof Scicluna said that there would also be a one-time arrangement for people who wanted to regularise their position by declaring income from rents which was previously undeclared.
Such people would need to register their properties with the Inland Revenue Department, declare their income for the past eight years, and then pay two years worth of rent calculated at 15% on the weighted average of eight years.

He warned that people who did not regularise their position and were caught would be charged tax at 35% of their income plus interest and penalties.

The Times of Malta

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Summer Break Time - The Street List

The Malta Environment and Planning Authority (MEPA), the Malta Tourism Authority (MTA) and the Building Regulations Office within the Ministry for Transport and Infrastructure notifies the public that in order to mitigate the nuisance of construction sites during the summer period - between the 15th June and the 30th September 2014, no demolition or excavation works will be allowed to be carried out in the following localities and streets.

Illegal excavation works and demolition can be reported by calling telephone number 2292 7608 (during office hours) or 9963 7508  (after office hours).

MALTA


B’BUGIA

TRIQ SAN PATRIZJU
TRIQ BAJJA SABIHA
MISRAH SUMMIT
DAWRET IL-QALB IMQADDSA

GZIRA

TRIQ IX-XATT
TRIQ SAMUEL TAYLOR COLERIDGE
TRIQ SAN BERT (FROM TRIQ PARISIO UP TO TRIQ HENRY F. BOUVERIE)
TRIQ HENRY F. BOUVERIE (FROM TRIQ IX-XATT UP TO TRIQ SAN BERT)
TRIQ PARISIO (FROM TRIQ IX-XATT UP TO TRIQ SAN BERT)
TRIQ BELVEDERE (FROM TRIQ IX-XATT UP TO TRIQ IL-FLOTTA)
TRIQ PONSOMBY (FROM TRIQ IX-XATT UP TO TRIQ CAMERUN)
TRIQ IL-FLOTTA
TRIQ SIR WILLIAM REID

BIRGU

ALL STREETS EXCEPT:
TRIQ HILDA TABONE
TRIQ IL-MAJJISTRAL
TRIQ IT-TRAMUNTANA
TRIQ GLORMU CASSAR
TRIQ IL-LBIC
TRIQ NOFSINHAR
TRIQ PACIFIKU SCICLUNA
TRIQ IL-PALAZZ TA’ L-ISQOF
TRIQ L-ARCISQOF MIKIEL GONZI
TRIQ IT-TORRI TA’ SAN GWANN
TRIQ IL-KWARTIER
TRIQ ID-DEJQA
TRIQ IL-FOSS TAS-SUR
TRIQ DESAIN
TRIQ IL-KARDINAL FABRIZIO SCIBERRAS

ISLA

ALL STREETS IN ISLA


BORMLA 

ALL STRRETS EXCEPT:
TRIQ RIKKARDU TAYLOR
MISRAH GAVINO GULIA
TRIQ ALESANDRA


MARSASCALA

SQAQ NO. 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10.
TRIQ PJAZZA DUN TARCIS AGIUS
TRIQ IL- GARDIEL
TRIQ MARINA
PJAZZA IL-BAĦĦARA
MIFSUD BONNICI
TRIQ SALINI
TRIQ SANT’ANNA
TRIQ SANT’ ANTNIN (FROM TRIQ IL-BUTTAR UP TO TRIQ IL-GARDIEL)
TRIQ SAN ĠORĠ
TRIQ ZONQOR
ZONQOR POINT
IŻ-ŻONA TA' SAN TUMAS
IŻ-ŻONA TAL-BAJJA TA' SAN TUMAS

MARSAXLOKK

TRIQ DUNCAN (FROM TRIQ SANTA KATERINA UP TO FISHERMAN’S WHARF)
FISHERMAN’S WHARF
TRIQ G. MANISCALCO (FROM SANTA KATERINA UP TO TRIQ WILGA)
TRIQ SANTA KATERINA
TRIQ SAN ĠUŻEPP (FROM TRIQ SANTA KATERINA UP TO FISHERMAN’S WHARF)
TRIQ WILGA (FROM FISHERMAN’S WHARF UP TO TRIQ ABDOSIR)
TRIQ IŻ-ŻEJTUN (FROM TRIQ SANTA KATERINA UP TO FISHERMAN’S WHARF)

MELLIEHA

TRIQ ADENAU
DAWRET IT-TUNNARA
TRIQ DUN BELIN AZZOPARDI
TRIQ GEORGE BORG OLIVIER
TRIQ GHERIEN (FROM TRIQ IS-SALINI L-QODMA UP TO MISRAH THOMAS SPRATT)
TRIQ INGRAW
TRIQ MAGRI
TRIQ IL-KBIRA
TRIQ IL-MARFA (FROM GORG BORG OLIVIER STREET UP TO TRIQ IL-QAMMIEH)
MISRAH IL-PARROCCA - MELLIEHA
TRIQ IL-PARROCCA  (FROM TRIQ-IL-QALB MQADDSA UP TO  MISRAH IL-PARROCCA)
TRIQ QAMMIEH
TRIQ IL-QARNIT
TRIQ SALVINU VELLA
TRIQ IL-QALB IMQADDSA (FROM MISRAĦ IL-PAROĊĊA UP TO TRIQ ĠORĠ BORG)
TRIQ IS-SAJJIEDA
TRIQ IT-TRILL
TRIQ IL-KBIRA
TRIQ DUN FRANGISK SCIBERRAS
IL-BAJJA TAL-MELLIEHA
IL-BAJJA TAL-ARMIER
IL-BAJJA TA' PARADISE
IŻ-ŻONA TA' GĦAJN TUFFIEĦA
GOLDEN BAY (RAMLA TAL-MIXQUQA)
IŻ-ŻONA TAL-MARFA
IĊ-CIRKEWWA

SELMUN, MELLIEĦA

SELMUN PALACE AREA

  MDINA
ALL STREETS/AREA IN MDINA

RABAT/MDINA/TA’ QALI

TRIQ IL-KATAKOMBI
TRIQ IL-KBIRA
MISRAH IL-MUSEUM
TRIQ IL-MUSEUM
MISRAĦ IL-PAROĊĊA
IS-SAQQAJJA
ST AUGUSTINE AVENUE
TRIQ SAN PAWL
TRIQ IL-KUNĊIŻŻJONI
TRIQ IR-REPPUBLIKA


TA’ QALI

ALL TA' QALI CRAFTS VILLAGE AREA

SLIEMA/TIGNE’

TRIQ L-ARMERIJA
BISAZZA LANE
TRIQ BISAZZA
TRIQ IL-KATIDRAL
TRIQ IL-KNISJA
TRIQ CRECHE  (UP TO DINGLI STREET)
TRIQ DINGLI
TRIQ DRAGUT
TRIQ DUN KARM PSAILA  (UP TO TRIQ SANTA MARGHERITA)
TRIQ DUN MIKIEL RUA
TIRQ IL-FAWWARA
TIRQ G. FAVA
TRIQ GHAR ID-DUD
TRIQ GHAR IL-LEMBI
TRIQ GINO MUSCAT AZZOPARDI
TRIQ GORG BORG OLIVIER
TRIQ GRAHAM
TRIQ GUZE HOWARD
TRIQ IL-KBIRA
TRIQ HUGHES HALLET
IL-PATRUNAT ALLEY
TRIQ KARM GALEA
TRIQ LOCKER
TRIQ LUZJU
TRIQ MANUEL DIMECH
TRIQ MATTHEW PULIS
TRIQ McIVER
TRIQ MILNER
TRIQ MRABAT
TRIQ NAZZARENU
TRIQ NICOLO ISOUARD (UP TO TRIQ DEPIRO)
TRIQ IL-KULLEĠĠ L-ANTIK
TRIQ PACE
QUI-SI-SANA SEAFRONT
TRIQ RUDOLF
TRIQ SACRO CUOR
TRIQ SAN GWANN BOSCO
TRIQ SAN PUBLIUS
TRIQ SANTA MARIJA
TRIQ SAVONA
TRIQ SIR A. MERCIECA
TRIQ SIR G BORG
TRIQSIR LUIGI CAMILLERI (UP TO TRIQ IL-VICTORJA)
PJAZZA SANT' ANNA
TRIQ SANT'ANTNIN
TRIQ SAN FRNAĠISK (UP TO TRIQ DEPIRO)
TRIQ SAN PIETRU
TRIQ STELLA MARIS
THE FERRIES
TRIQ THORNTON
TIGNE SEAFRONT
TRIQ TIGNE
TRIQ IT-TORRI
TRIQ VINCENT SCERRI
TRIQ ZIMMERMAN BARBARO
TRIQ ARTURO MERCIECA
WINDSOR TERRACE

ST. JULIAN’S

TRIQ BALL
PJAZZA BALLUTA
TRIQ IL-KNISJA
TRIQ DOBBIE
TRIQ SPINOLA
TRIQ ID-DRAGUNARA
TRIQ ELIA ZAMMIT
TRIQ GEORGE BORG OLIVIER
TRIQ GORT
TRIQ LOURDES
TRIQ IL-KBIRA
TRIQ IL-MENSIJA
TRIQ PACEVILLE AVENUE
TRIQ IL-QALIET S
TRIQ ROSS
TRIQ S. PRIVITERA
TRIQ SCHREIBER
SPINOLA BAY SEAFRONT AREA
PJAZZA SPINOLA (MISRAĦ IL-QALB IMQADDSA)
TRIQ ST AUGUSTINE
ST GEORGE’S LANE
ST GEORGE’S ROAD
ST GEORGE’S SEAFRONT
TRIQ SAN ĠUŻEPP
TRIQ SANTA RITA
TRIQ ST.ANDREW’S
TRIQ IL-WILGA
TRIQ PROFS WALTER GANADO
IT-TELGHA TA’SAN GILJAN
RAMPA TA’ SAN GILJAN
BAY LANE
TRIQ IL-BAJJA
TREJQET IL-BAJJA
TREJQET ID-DRAGONARA
WESGHET GEORGE PORTANIER
TRIQ ANGELO PULLICINO
TRIQ IL-BAJJA
TRIQ GDIDA FI TREJQET IL-BAJJA
TRIQ IL-KBIRA
TRIQ B’KARA
TELGHET B’KARA
TRIQ LAPSI
TRIQ WIED GHOMOR
TRIQ FORREST
TRIQ MENSIJA
TRIQ MUSCAT AZZOPARDI
TRIQ ALFRED GAUCI
TRIQ L V FARRUGIA

SWIEQI

TRIQ ST ANDREW’S (FROM TRIQ M. A. VASSALLI UP TO TRIQ L-IBRAG)
TRIQ IS-SIDRA
TRIQ IL-KEFFA
TRIQ L-IMGHAZEL
TRIQ IL-GWIELAQ
TRIQ L-GHARBIEL
TRIQ ID-DRIS
TRIQ A. M. CASSOLA
TRIQ IL-HEMEL
TRIQ IL-BRAMEL
TRIQ IL-KTAJJEN
TRIQ IS-SIRK
TRIQ IL-GEJZA
TRIQ IS-SWIEQI
TRIQ L-ILQUGH
TRIQ FUQ IL-GONNA
TRIQ L-GHOQOD
TRIQ IR-RONKUN
TRIQ IL-QATTA
TRIQ TA’ L-IBRAG
TRIQ IL-MARBAT

ST. PAUL’S BAY

DAWRET IL-GZEJJER
DAWRET IN-NAWFRAGJU
PLAJJET BOGNOR
RAS IL-QAWRA
SQAQ TAX-XAMA
TELGHET IX-XEMXIJA
TREJQET IL-KULPARA
TREJQET IL-LIXKA
TRIQ ALOFJU WIGNACOURT
TRIQ ANANIJA
TRIQ ANDREW CUNNINGHAM
TRIQ ANNETTO CARUANA
TRIQ BARNABA
TRIQ BARNABA
TRIQ BORDINO
TRIQ BUGIBBA
TRIQ CARMELO DE LUCCA
TRIQ CASSARINO
TRIQ CENSU TANTI
TRIQ DAMASKU
TRIQ DOMENICO DE NIZZA
TRIQ EFESU
TRIQ GARCIA DE TOLEDO
TRIQ GHAWDEX
TRIQ GIUSEPPE DESPOTT
TRIQ GULJU
TRIQ HORATIO NELSON
TRIQ IC-CAGHAQ
TRIQ IC-CERN
TRIQ ID-DOLMEN
TRIQ IL-BAHHARA
TRIQ IL-BAJJA
TRIQ IL-BEKKUN
TRIQ IL-FEKRUNA
TRIQ IL-FLIEGU
TRIQ IL-FREJGATINA
TRIQ IL-FUGASS
TRIQ IL-GANDOFFLI
TRIQ IL-GHABEX
TRIQ IL-GIFEN
TRIQ IL-GLIEBA
TRIQ IL-GWIEBI
TRIQ IL-HADDIELA
TRIQ IL-HALEL
TRIQ IL-HAMSA W GHOXRIN TA JANNAR
TRIQ IL-HARIFA
TRIQ IL-HATAB
TRIQ IL-HGEJJEG
TRIQ IL-KAHLI
TRIQ IL-KAVALLI
TRIQ IL-KAVETTA
TRIQ IL-KLAMARI
TRIQ IL-KONVENTWALI
TRIQ IL-KONVERZJONI
TRIQ IL-KONVERZJONI
TRIQ IL-KONZ
TRIQ IL-KORP TAL-PIJUNIERI
TRIQ IL-KURAZZA
TRIQ IL-LACCI
TRIQ IL-LAMPUKI
TRIQ IL-LUZZU
TRIQ IL-MAJJIERA
TRIQ IL-MASKLI
TRIQ IL-MAZOLA
TRIQ IL-MELH
TRIQ IL-MERLUZZ
TRIQ IL-MISTRA
TRIQ IL-MISTRIEH
TRIQ IL-MOSTA
TRIQ IL-MULETT
TRIQ IL-PAGELL
TRIQ IL-PAPA PAWLU V
TRIQ IL-PORJUNKULA
TRIQ IL-PORT RUMAN
TRIQ IL-PWALES
TRIQ IL-QALA
TRIQ IL-QALB TA' GESU
TRIQ IL-QARNIT
TRIQ IL-QAWRA
TRIQ IL-QROLL
TRIQ IL-VILLEGJATURA
TRIQ IL-WILEG
TRIQ IN-NAKKRI
TRIQ IR-RAMEL
TRIQ IR-REBBIEGHA
TRIQ IR-RIZZI
TRIQ IS-SAJF
TRIQ IS-SAJJIED
TRIQ IS-SIMAR
TRIQ IT-TAFAL
TRIQ IT-TAMAR
TRIQ IT-TARTARUN
TRIQ IT-TEMPESTA
TRIQ IT-TORRI
TRIQ IT-TRILL
TRIQ IT-TRUNCIERA
TRIQ IT-TURISTI
TRIQ IX-XITWA
TRIQ IX-XOLFA
TRIQ IZ-ZERNIEQ
TRIQ J. QUINTINUS
TRIQ JAMES SMITH
TRIQ L-ALKA
TRIQ L-ANKRI
TRIQ L-ARTIKLI
TRIQ L-ARZELL
TRIQ L-ARZNELL
TRIQ LASCARIS
TRIQ L-ERBA' MWIEZEB
TRIQ L-GHAXRA TA' FRAR
TRIQ L-IBHRA
TRIQ L-IMHAR
TRIQ L-IMREJKBA
TRIQ L-IMSELL
TRIQ L-ISKUNA
TRIQ L-ISPONOZ
TRIQ L-ISTAMNAR
TRIQ L-ISTURJUN
TRIQ MARKIZA BUGEJA
TRIQ MONS. ALFREDO MIFSUD
TRIQ NICOLA ARDOINO
TRIQ PADERBORN
TRIQ PARADES
TRIQ PATRI FELIC SAMMUT
TRIQ RADDET IR-ROTI
TRIQ RUGGERO LORIA
TRIQ SALVATORE BORG
TRIQ SAN GLORMU
TRIQ SAN GORG
TRIQ SAN GUZEPP
TRIQ SAN GWANN BATTISTA
TRIQ SAN LUQA
TRIQ SAN MASSIMILJANU KOLBE
TRIQ SAN PAWL
TRIQ SAN PAWL IL-BAHAR
TRIQ SAN TIMOTJU
TRIQ SAN XMUN
TRIQ SANT' ANTNIN
TRIQ SANT' ARISTARKUS
TRIQ SANTA MARIJA
TRIQ SIR LUIGI PREZIOSI
TRIQ TA' NAWCIERA
TRIQ TA' ZANDU
TRIQ TAL-BILBEL
TRIQ TONI BAJADA
WESGHA KENNIJA

QRENDI/WIED IŻ-ŻURRIEQ

ALL AREAS IN WIED IZ-ZURRIEQ

VALLETTA

ALL STREETS EXCEPT:
CITY GATE BUS TERMINUS (VJAL RE DWARDU AND VJAL NELSON)
MISRAH IL-HELSIEN
TRIQ PAPA PIJU V
TRIQ L-ORDINANZA (FROM MINN TRIQ IL-REPUBLIKA UP TO TRIQ IL-FRAN)
SANT ‘IERMU
TRIQ MIKIEL ANTON VASSALLI (FROM TRIQ NOFSINHAR UP TO TRIQ MELITA)
TRIQ IT-TEZORERIJA
PJAZZA CASTILJA
IL-FOSS TAL-BELT (FROM TRIQ L-ASSEDJU IL-KBIR UP TO STOCK EXCHANGE)

FLORIANA

TRIQ PINTO
TRIQ IL VITTMI FURJANIZI TAL-GWERRA
XATT L-GHASSARA TAL-GHENEB
TRIQ VINCENZO DIMECH
TRIQ L ASSEDJU L-KBIR (FLORIANA)
TRIQ IL-MALL

COMINO

ALL COMINO

GOZO


GHAJNSIELEM

TRIQ SANT ANTNIN
TRIQ IL-HAMRI

MARSALFORN, ŻEBBUĠ

ALL STREETS/AREAS IN MARSALFORN

MGARR, GOZO

MGARR WHARF
TRIQ MARTINO GARCES
TRIQ MARINA
TRIQ DE VILHENA
TRIQ SANT ANTNIN (FROM TRIQ L-IMĠARR UP TO TRIQ IŻ-ŻEWWIEQA)
TRIQ IR-REBHA
TRIQ MANUEL VILHENA
TRIQ IX-XATT
TRIQ LOURDES
TRIQ IL-HAMRI
TRIQ IZ-ZEWWIEQA
TRIQ L-IMGARR

  RAMLA L-ĦAMRA, XAGĦRA

SAN LAWRENZ

A TAD-DWEJRA
TRIQ IL-ĠEBLA TAL-ĠENERAL (FROM IT-TORRI TAL-ĠEBLA TAL-GENERAL UP TO THE SEA)

VICTORIA, GOZO 

TRIQ DUN KARL BONDI
MISRAH SAN FRANĠISK
TRIQ IL-KASTELL
MISRAĦ SAN ĠORĠ
TRIQ TAHT PUTIRJAL
TRIQ KARLU GALEA
TRIQ UNIVERSITAS
TRIQ IL-KUNSILL CIVIKU

XAGHRA

TRIQ GEBLA TAS-SANSUN
TRIQ GNIEN IMRIK
TRIQ GUZEPPI BAJADA

XLENDI, MUNXAR

ALL STREETS/AREAS IN XLENDI

The Malta Tourism Authority reserves the right to change amend this list as it deems necessary.


Saturday, June 22, 2013

15% flat tax rate introduced on residential lets in Malta.


The Government has decided to introduce a flat tax rate of 15 per cent on the rent of residential properties, deputy Prime Minister Louis Grech said this morning....

Currently, the rent tax rate can go up to 35 per cent and has resulted in rampant tax evasion. Mr Grech said he expected more people to declare their rental income following this change, which would include harsher penalties for those who fail to declare their income.....

Read the full article on The Times of Malta online here.

Saturday, June 01, 2013

New Malta residence scheme for foreigners launched - thresholds drastically reduced - timesofmalta.com

New residence scheme for foreigners launched - thresholds drastically reduced - timesofmalta.com

A new residence scheme for foreigners was launched this morning, replacing the foreign residents' scheme which was controversially suspended in 2011.

Parliamentary Secretary Edward Zammit Lewis said the Global Residence Programme, as the new scheme is called, will allow people who buy high value property and pay taxes in Malta to benefit from a residence permit.
The previous scheme was suspended and initially replaced by the High Net Worth Individuals Scheme which did not prove popular because the minimum value of purchased property had been raised from €116,000 to €400,000.

Under the Global Residence Programme, the value of immovable property bought in Malta by foreigners has to be at least €275,000. However, when the property is in the south of Malta or in Gozo, the minimum value can be €220,000.........

Friday, October 26, 2012

Budget 2013 to address tourism / self catering licensing issues


The next Budget will address the current licensing system that is being bypassed by many self-catering accommodation spots in Gozo, putting those acting in line with the law at a disadvantage, Finance Minister Tonio Fenech said this morning. The minister was speaking during a pre-budget consultation business breakfast at the Kempinski Hotel in San Lawrenz.

Read the full article on The Times of Malta online, here.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Less bureaucracy in Trade Licence and MEPA requirements, for new businesses in Malta


People opening a new business which is not health or food related will no longer have to apply for a licence with the Trade Department following changes to the licensing process aimed to reduce bureaucracy and increase efficiency.

The changes were announced this morning by Small Businesses Minister Jason Azzopardi. The minister said that after obtaining the Mepa permit, a business owner would only have to notify the Trade Department that he was about to start the new commercial activity.

The businessman could do this up to 30 days after embarking on the new operation. The minister said he estimated that around 80 per cent of new commercial activities would benefit from this simplification.

Another new rule aimed to reduce bureaucracy is that when a new commercial activity is embarked upon, one would not have to submit copies of the Mepa certificates and floor plans but just the number of the Mepa permit.

The minister said that through these changes, the government was showing that it cared for the sector and was committed to offer Maltese and Gozitan businesses the best. Other measures included reductions in the cost of several licenses. The Trade Director was also being given the power to cancel licences which would have remained unpaid for four consecutive years.


Source: The Times of Malta online, Oct 12, 2012

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

High-end apartments fuel property price increases - CBM quarterly review


Property prices in the first three months of this year rose by 5.5% on a year earlier, the Central Bank has found, on the basis of its survey of advertised prices. Prices also rose by 6.1% in the previous quarter.
The increase in the overall property price index over its year-ago level was primarily a result of developments in the market for apartments, the bank said. Apartments saw an annual increase of 8.7%. The main reason behind this relatively strong growth was the increased number of advertised upmarket properties in high value areas compared with previous years.

During the first quarter of 2012, asking prices in the “other” category, which consists of townhouses, houses of character and villas rose by 4.1%. This increase was largely a result of higher asking prices for houses of character. Prices of villas and townhouses also increased; however, their impact on the headline rate was more contained.
On the other hand, asking prices for maisonettes were marginally down over their year-ago level while prices for terraced houses dropped at an annual rate of 8.5%. With regard to the latter, given the small number of terraced houses in the Bank’s sample, this development had a limited downward impact on the overall property price index.

The bank said the number of advertised properties captured in the Bank’s survey contracted by 3.1% on a year earlier in the first quarter of 2012, compared with a 7.0% decline in the previous quarter.
Meanwhile, the number of building permits issued by Mepa also continued to decrease, going down by 16.5% year-on-year in the March quarter, following a drop of 17.6% in the previous quarter.
In absolute terms, this was mostly due to a lower number of permits issued for apartments although development permits for maisonettes and the “other category” also registered drops.

In contrast, development permits for terraced houses increased. Residential property prices based on the NSO Property Price Index, which had fallen by 1.4% in 2011, rose by 1.6% year-on-year in the March quarter of 2012. The increase in the latter reflected a 1.7% rise in the prices of apartments and a 6.0% rise in those of maisonettes. On the other hand, NSO data also show that, after they had risen by 7.0% during 2011, the number of sale contracts dropped at an annual rate of 6.7% in the first quarter of 2012.

Source - The Times of Malta online

Also view "CBM lowers growth projections, additional measures may be needed to achieve deficit targets" - The Times of Malta Wednesday, August 22, 2012, 11:08

Wednesday, August 08, 2012

Interest-subsidy scheme for first-time buyers purchasing from private sector in Malta


The government has announced a limited one-year interest subsidy scheme for first time buyers wishing to purchase a house from the private sector. The scheme was announced by Justice Minister Chris Said and will be open for the first 300 applications.

They will benefit from an interest subsidy of up to 2.5% on borrowing from the banks of up to €80,000. The savings could reach €14,500. Dr Said said the subsidy would be given for a period of between eight and ten years. The scheme would be administered by the Housing Authority.

Source: The Times of Malta online

Friday, July 13, 2012

LN to enable property owners in Malta to regularise in accordance with sanitary law.


A legal notice to enable owners of dwellings who have an existing structure, which is not in accordance with sanitary law, to regularise their position against an administrative fee will come into affect on August 1. The legal notice covers the size of internal and back yards, floor to ceiling height and rooms built in the backyard. These concessions only apply to development built before the coming into force of these new measures, on August 1.

If the size of the internal or backyard was not constructed according to sanitary regulations, the concession will be permitted as long as the length of any side is up to 65 per cent of that required by law and the overall area of the yard is more than 65 per cent of what was originally approved.

If the length of any side is between 60 and 65 per cent and the overall area is within that range, the plans of the dwellings could be considered acceptable subject to an engineer report stating that the rooms had adequate lighting and ventilation. These new regulations do not apply to commercial buildings. Internal or back yard less than half the size of what they should have been will not be accepted as they posed a public health risk.

Details of this new legal notice were given this morning by the director of Public Health Ray Busuttil, who is also the chairman of the General Services Board, which in the past two to three years saw a steep increase in requests for sanctioning due to these non-conformities.

The legal notice will give Mepa the power to sanction without the need for applicants to go to the General Services Board. With regard to floor to ceiling height, which should be 2.75 metres, the board was seeing a lot of applications with a height of 2.6 metres. This was due to smaller stone slabs and 2.6 metres was established as the threshold for the height limitation. If the floor to ceiling height was between 2.4 and 2.6 metres, an engineer's report was needed.

As regards rooms in backyard, these could not occupy more than 35 per cent of the area of the actual backyard and could not be more than 10 courses high. To apply one will have to get a specific form, available from Mepa, and have it filled in by an architect who also has to declare that it was a pre-August 1 building. An administration fee which has not yet been established will be charged Dr Busuttil noted that most of the buildings affected were apartment blocks or small houses built between the 70s and the 90s.

Mepa director of enforcement at Alex Borg explained that the measures were in reaction to the social realities of a number of families who ended up with a property which could not be modified or supplied with water and electricity meters due to the size of the yard.

These yards were often only slightly smaller than permitted and often served an entire block of apartment over which not all effected parties had control.

Source: Times of Malta online July 13, 2012

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Environmental Indicators show sharp increase in construction waste


Waste generation in 2010 increased by 48% compared to the previous year, mainly due to a sharp increase in construction waste, a Mepa Environmental Indicators report issued today shows.

The report says that construction and demolition waste had increased after having declined by 70% between 2008 and 2009. Municipal waste declined by 10 percentage point to 17.2% while hazardous waste declined from 4.8% to 2.5%.

Mepa chairman Austin Walker said the increase in construction waste stemmed from a spike in building permits in previous years. He said the amount of waste which was was being recycled had increased from 4% in 2009 to 7.7% in 2010.

The Environmental indicators also show that last year the number of permits issued for housing units declined from a high of 11,000 in 2007 to just 3,995 last year. Malta last year exceeded the EU standards on particulate matter in the air on a number of days, mainly in Msida, one of the areas having the heaviest traffic flows in Malta. However levels of sulphur dioxide and benzine both decreased.

The report's results were announced by Environment Minister Mario de Marco, who said that the replacement of the bus fleet would have a positive effect on air quality, but Malta still had the oldest average car age in the EU at 13.6 years. Malta, he said, needed to encourage car pooling, and he called on local councils to also create traffic free zones, particularly in village cores. The reports says that government spending on the environment had risen by 30% from 2009 to reach €130m.

Electricity generation rose by 2.6% in 2011. Marguerite Camilleri, Unit manager, policy coordinator at Mepa said the area of land designated as special protection area had in 2011 increased by 10.8 square kilometres compared to 2010.

Dr de Marco said such indicators were important in the context of the people's right to access for environmental information, which was reaffirmed in last week's UN conference on sustainable development.

Touching briefly on the importance of maintaining the coastal environment, he said that this was why the government could not say that land reclamation was one of the ways forward. He asked whether there was a massive demand for land which would justify the need for land reclamation, which could devastate coastal habitats?

Source: Times of Malta online June 27, 2012