‘Five years of hedging’ – Joseph Muscat talks about energy in Malta

 - Business - May 4 SHARE ON:
‘Five years of hedging’ - Joseph Muscat talks about energy in Malta

Taking to Facebook, former Prime Minister Joseph Muscat went on to give his 5c about hedging and the role of power-stations in Malta. 

Muscat said that in the time period when Malta was making the transition from heavy fuel oil to gas, the Nationalist Party came out against the building of power station despite the environmental, economic and health benefits. 

‘They used to say that we did not need it and that we could do well with just the inter-connector’ said Muscat. ‘The economy grew so much in the past few years that not only did we not need a new power station, but we have already practically reached its full capacity.’ 

Muscat pointed out that some claimed that we would save up to €20 million per year. This was an incorrect figure, said the former Labour Party leader, as whoever calculated it did not take into consideration capital cost. 

Referring to the PN, Muscat said that they then went on to say that through the hedging deal, through which the price of gas from Azerbaijan was fixated for 5 years, we were losing money. 

In these last few months, he said, those who were critiquing have seemingly lost their tongues and no longer criticise the policy of energy mix. ‘I wonder why’ he rhetorically asked. 

Muscat said that the response is simple should one do the calculation which everyone seemingly forgot to do. ‘If one simply compares all that the country paid in the past 5 years due to the hedging deal with that which the Maltese were being asked to pay through the inter-connecter alone, we would see that we managed to save €125 million. These are taxes and burdens lifted off families and businesses.’ 

Muscat said that the decision to commit to hedging to ensure stability, against the advise of those who ‘wrecked the country with high costs’, left a result. This is because bills decreased and were the lowest in Europe. 

‘This is why it is easy to understand why some lost their tongues over the topic of energy.’ 


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Four kilos of cannabis seized by police off dinghy

 - Local - May 4 SHARE ON:
Four kilos of cannabis seized by police off dinghy

Police seized upwards of four kilos of cannabis, registering a street value of more than €100,000. The authorities seized the pile of drugs off a dinghy which had just arrived in Malta. 

A 32-year-old man from Marsaxlokk was arrested, and was accused of trafficking and importation of drugs from Sicily to Malta. 

The arrest, which occurred Monday evening at around 7pm, after police surrounded a dinghy whilst it was docking in Delimara. Magistrate Victor Axiak is leading an inquiry. 



Russian oil will be completely banned within six months says Von der Leyen

 - International - May 4 SHARE ON:
Russian oil will be completely banned within six months says Von der Leyen

EU Commission President Ursula Von der Leyen revealed on Wednesday that the union would be imposing a gradual ban on Russian oil, as punishment for the invasion of Ukraine. 

The EU chief said during a parliamentary meeting in Strasbourg that they will make sure that Russian oil is phased out in an orderly fashion. 

‘This is why we will phase out Russian supply of crude oil within six months and refined products by the end of the year’ she said. However, the proposal asked that Hungary and Slovakia, both massively dependent on the oil, be given more time to meet the ban. 

Ambassadors from the 27 European Union countries will be meeting on Wednesday to assess the plan as it will need unanimous approval before going into effect. 

Leyen also revealed that the EU will be asking that the member states deny Sberbank, which is Russia’s biggest bank, any access to SWIFT, the global banking communications system. This would impede the Russian financial system and Putin’s ability to continue the destruction. 

The draft of the proposal is also seeking to add the leader of the Russian Orthodox Church, Patriarch Kirill, to the list of sanctioned individuals in the package. The list includes 58 people, consisting of the family of Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov. 

Apart from this, the list would add military officers who committed war crimes in Bucha and Mariupol. ‘This sends another important signal to all perpetrators of the Kremlin’s war: We know who you are and you will be held accountable’ she said. 


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Nurses in protest to show solidarity over Mt Carmel self-harm case

 - Local - May 4 SHARE ON:
Nurses in protest to show solidarity over Mt Carmel self-harm case

A mass of members from the Malta Union of Midwives and Nurses (MUMN) joined forces to show solidarity with nurse Joseph Pace, as he faces charges in connection with a patient who self-harmed under his watch. 

Pace is being prosecuted by the police in his role as a manager at the hospital and is due to be charged in court with criminal misconduct. The incident dates back to 2017, and involves a patient who self-harmed despite supposedly being under constant self-watch. 

The press conference outside Mount Carmel Hospital, MUMN President Paul Pace called Joseph Pace a hero who is loved by all the staff, patients and relatives. 

Staff shortages prevented the management from providing Level 1 supervision on the patient, with Paul Pace saying that Pace was interrogated by police. Although the union asked Health Minister Chris Fearne to intervene, the case was not dropped. 

Paul Pace lamented how nurses are constantly being threatened with court. ‘This is the third nurse to be sent to court over constant watches, something which requires one-to-one nursing 24 hours a day. However, nurses are out of stock here and instead we end up taking them to court. What blame do nurses have?’

Joseph Pace explained how this happened regularly and that the staff did everything possible to save the life of the patient. He said that he was possibly facing thousands in fines and up to nine years in prison.’ 

Paul Pace said that the authorities can send all the nurses supporting Joseph Pace to prison because they don’t mind. ‘We will go to prison with this guy.’ Calling the situation at the mental health institution a farce, he said that a new one has been promised for years. Mount Carmel is not adequate, he said, explaining how wards are being constantly closed down and that it is a ticking time bomb waiting to explode. 


Photo Source: MaltaToday

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