Reiterating a pledge made months ago, Finance Minister Clyde Caruana stated that the next budget and the subsequent ones will not be introducing any new tax. Caruana was made finance minister in late 2020, making this his first budget. The minister stated how the pandemic’s impact on every country presented one of the biggest challenges since WWII.
The pre-budget document was unveiled on Tuesday, with a theme asking: ‘What country would you like to leave for your children?’ He went on to state that Malta saw an economic boost of 7.2% between 2015 and 2019, with an 8.3% contraction in 2020 when COVID-19 hit.
Caruana forecasted a 6% economic growth in 2021 and 4.9% in 2022. He also reiterated that employment figureswecreased steadily during 2021 and went below the 2019 level. The action of the government during the pandemic, Caruana noted, cost the country millions that it afforded. The country’s revenue decrease as a sharp increase in expenditure was noted.
The pandemic will have cost the country a total of €1.5 billion by the end of 2021. The debt-to-GDP ratio for 2021 was 65%, with a forecast of reaching 65.8% in 2022.
Photo Source: Clyde Caruana FB