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Living and working in Malta

Overview

The Republic of Malta is a relatively small, populated (approximately 400,000 residents) nation located in the Mediterranean. Consisting of seven islands, it is a popular tourist resort due to its tropical climate, exciting nightlife and a history dating back thousands of years.

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

Geography

Malta is an archipelago in the Mediterranean, 93 km (58 miles) south of the Italian island of Sicily. The three largest islands (Malta, Gozo and Comino) are inhabited. The archipelago lies on the edge of the African tectonic plate, as it borders with the Eurasian plate. Numerous bays along the indented coastline of the islands provide good harbours and the landscape consists of low hills with terraced fields. The highest point is 253 metres above sea level.

Climate

Malta has a typical Mediterranean climate. The summers are hot, dry, and very sunny whilst the winters are mild and a little rainy. During May to October, temperatures average around 32°C (90F) with around 10-11 hours of sunshine average per day. Between November and April, temperatures average around 14°C (57F) but still with an average of 6.5 hours of sunshine each day. 

Annual rainfall is low, averaging 578mm a year. During the summer there can be very long dry spells. Swimming is possible all year round (for the hardier people) with the sea temperature rarely dropping below 15°C (59F) and reaching as high as 26°C (79F).

Political system

Malta became independent from Britain in 1964 and is a republic, whose parliamentary system is closely modeled on Westminster. The President is voted for every five years.

Languages

The main languages in Malta are Maltese, English and Italian.

Economy

Until 1800 Malta depended on cotton, tobacco and its shipyards for exports. After the British arrived, they came to depend on the dockyard for support of the Royal Navy, especially during the Crimean War. In 1869 the opening of the Suez Canal gave Malta's economy a great boost, as there was a massive increase in the shipping which entered the port. Ships stopping at Malta's docks for fuel brought additional benefits to the Island.

Malta’s major resources are limestone, a favourable geographic location and a productive labour force. Malta produces only about 20% of its food needs, has limited freshwater supplies and has no domestic energy sources.

The economy is dependent on foreign trade (serving as a freight trans-shipment point), manufacturing (especially electronics and textiles) and tourism. Tourism infrastructure has increased dramatically over the years and a number of good-quality hotels are present on the island, although overdevelopment and the destruction of traditional housing is of growing concern.

Film production is a growing contributor to the Maltese economy, with a number of big-budget foreign films shooting each year. Of late, the country has increased the exports of many other types of services such as banking, finance and insurance.

Since 2008, the currency has been the euro. Cost of living is significantly below that of many other offshore jurisdictions. The upper tax rate [accurate at the time of writing in 2009] is 35% for income above €28,000.

Religion

Malta is a Christian country, with a prevalence of Roman Catholicism.

Electricity

The electrical supply is 230 volts +/- 10%.  The frequency of the supply is 50 hertz. The three-pin rectangular plug system is used, as in Britain. Adapters are easy to find.

Recreational activities

The capital city of Valletta host to regular plays and concerts, as well as scores of exhibitions and street events.

For those who love art, the possibilities are endless – visit the impressive artistic collection at the National Museum of Fine Arts, see the Caravaggio’s Beheading of St John and visit medieval Palazzo Falzon, which houses a large collection of antiques, in Mdina. To view more contemporary work, walk around the exhibits at the St Johns Cavalier Art Centre.

For fanciful fun, highlights are the passionate carnival and open-air concerts. Not to be missed is the Nadur carnival in Gozo and the parade in Valletta. Children will enjoy activity and fun parks, which include the old film set of Popeye Village.

For those who love the water, scuba diving is an avid sport on the Islands. A harbour cruise, swimming at Blue Grotto in Comino and St Peters Pool in Marsascala, renting a jet-ski, chartering a yacht, visiting Mgarr Ix-Xini cove in Gozo and par kiting from one of the sandy beaches to get a birds eye view of Malta are all absolute water-lover must-do’s.

Malta’s largest sports centre (The Marsa Sports Club) is about 4 km (2.5 miles) south of Valletta and lists among its numerous features an 18-hole golf course, miniature golf, 18 tennis courts, 5 squash courts, cricket grounds and a swimming pool.

The rural side of the Islands is fascinating, with charming villages & captivating folklore. With 365 spectacular churches, there are more than a few highlights - visit the Mosta church famous for its large dome (third largest dome in Europe). Visit the church of St Nicholas in the village of Siggiewi.

In addition, Malta boasts a wide selection of other sporting events sponsored by national associations, including judo, basketball, cycling, table tennis, hockey, water polo, wrestling, horse-riding, fencing and more.

Opportunities

If you are interested in a job in Malta, please be sure to include it as one of your preferences on our application form.

 

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