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Youths more worried about cost of living in Malta than grey-listing

Youths more worried about cost of living in Malta than grey-listing
Mar 4 2022 Share

According to a survey commissioned by the Times of Malta, concerns about rising prices and cost of living have shot up over just six months. A quarter of respondents, at 25.2%, stated that the cost of living is one of the country’s biggest issues. This is up from 6.3% in August. The survey was carried out between February 14th and February 24h by market research firm Esprimi. 

Price concerns were just slightly below worries about healthcare and the COVID-19 pandemic. Health was cited as one of the main problems the country is facing by 27.2% of people. In third place was corruption, with 20.8% of respondents citing the issue. Half of the people who claimed they vote for the Nationalist Party cited corruption as one of the country’s problems. 

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On the other side of the coin, corruption was only brought up as an issue by 7.3% of people who said they intend to vote for Labour in the next general election. This follows a governmental move to ease public concern about rising prices through handouts as well as energy and fuel bill freezing. If the concerns were broken down, cost of living increases were cited as a problem by youths the most. A total of 42.5% of people aged between 16 and 24 mentioned prices as being of the country’s main issues. 

Both the environment and the grey listing of Malta feature very low on the list of concerns. Only 12.3% raised the environment as being one of the country’s problem, below traffic, parking and public transport at 13.3%. As for the grey-listing, only 6.5% of people brought it up. The economy was cited as a problem by 5.3% of people, and the government as a whole by just 1.3%. Malta’s reputation abroad only factored in at a minimal 0.8%. 

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New plane hangar inaugurated by Prime Minister to create over 500 jobs

New plane hangar inaugurated by Prime Minister to create over 500 jobs
Mar 4 2022 Share

The company SR Technics, operating within the aviation sector, inaugurated the expansion of a new hangar which will serve to provide maintenance for airplanes in our country. With the investment amounting up to €42 million , the hangar stretches up to 40,000 metres squared and will provide enough space to modify up to six planes (of Boeing 737 and Airbus A320 type) at the same time. 

The inauguration ceremony was attended by Malta’s prime minister Robert Abela along with SR Technics chief executive Jean-Marc Lenz and Swiss ambassador Monika Schmutz Kirgöz. The Prime Minister stated in his speech that he is very satisfied that these facilities are being built as they push Malta forward and at the forefront in Europe in the maintenance sector and industry. 

Abela explained how this inauguration is a celebration of the collective effort by our country which worked tirelessly to attract the investment as well as taking care of the investors. This was aided by the COVID Wage Supplement, said the Prime Minister. 

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Hundreds of jobs of quality employment will be created through this inauguration, said the Labour Party leader, especially for the youth of Malta. ‘I believe we must set up a specific aviation education centre that will cater for the needs of the industry.’ 

‘Today, the outlook is looking much brighter, although the industry still faces a long road to full recovery. You face challenges in maintenance, supply chain difficulties, system inconsistencies and spiralling costs. And my government stands ready to help.’ Minister Miriam Dalli also spoke during the event, saying that the government always believed in companies like SR Technics. ‘This is evidenced by the immense investment carried out in various industries, particularly during the pandemic’ she said. 

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Supermarkets world-wide removing Russian vodka brands over invasion

Supermarkets world-wide removing Russian vodka brands over invasion
Mar 4 2022 Share

Following the Russian invasion of Ukraine, supermarkets have started to shelf off Russian vodka brands from sale as a sign of solidarity with the invaded country. Two UK supermarket chains have already removed two brands with immediate effect. Russian Standard vodka, which is distilled in St Petersburg, will no longer appear on shelves at Morrisons. 

Co-op too said its decision was taken in response to the ongoing conflict, saying that because the drink is overtly marketed as being Russian and produced there, the removal was warranted. A spokesperson said that in response to the invasion, it will not be stocked for the foreseeable future. ‘Our members and customers will also be able to support the humanitarian response to help those displaced by the conflict by donating at our stores to the Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC) appeal. 

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With 2,600 stores receiving the appeal, the customer’s donations will be match funded up to £100,000. Other newsrooms are also reporting other European supermarket chains banning the vodka. Government-controlled alcohol monopolies in Finland and Sweden were the first to ban liquor sourced from the country on Monday, followed by authorities in Norway on Tuesday. This was followed by Latvia, Estonia and Lithuania, which straight up banned all goods coming from Russia. 

Russian brands account for just 3% of all vodka consumption in Europe according to mark analysis firm IWSR. Brands such as Smirnoff are produced entirely outside of Russia. The ban is rather a symbolic move which will not have a major monetary impact on Russian vodka producers. 

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‘We need to improve Malta’s reputation’ say Nationalist Party

‘We need to improve Malta’s reputation’ say Nationalist Party
Mar 4 2022 Share

Speaking at a press conference, Opposition leader Bernard Grech and ex-contesting MP Claudio Grech highlighted the importance of improving Malta’s reputation. 

Claudio Grech began his speech by saying that Malta must work to improve its reputation. He said Malta should not do this as a superpower which could compete in massive economical markets. Nor should it do this just because of the grey-listing, corruption or governance issues. 

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Claudio said that Malta should become known for its quality of living, for the value created on the island, the ability to welcome multiculturalism and to create a safe environment. 

Speaking just after, Opposition leader Bernard Grech said that Malta’s grey listing is a wound that those in government are not tending to. This is why, Grech said, the PN aimed towards a three month goal of exiting the grey list. He said that it is not enough to get out of the grey list as there will be work afterwards. 

He also said that if the people of Malta choose the Nationalist Party in this general election, they would be sending an international message that they want mature and clean politics. 

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