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Malta

Our history in brief
The Maltese Archipelago lies at the near geographic centre of the Mediterranean and for millennia it has been a strategic location for maritime trade. The Phoenicians were the first known culture to have settled the Islands; drawn to Malta for its safe, natural harbours and ideal location. Over the centuries, the Islands have played home to myriad cultures from the Romans and Arabs to the Normans, the Hospitaller Knights of St John, the French and the British. By virtue of its near two centuries of British rule, Malta is a bilingual nation with English and Maltese as joint official languages.

A trading nation
Malta The Islands today still have strong maritime ties. Over the past decade, Malta Freeport has experienced remarkable growth and is now a major, maritime transshipment and logistics centre in the Mediterranean region. Almost all goods transshipped through the port or being re-packaged for onward shipment do so tax-free.

Malta has excellent air communication routes too through Malta International Airport. The Islands are around three hours flying time from most major European cities and have excellent onward connections. The airport and Freeport lie at close proximity enabling Malta to attract companies in the light manufacturing and import-export-distribution businesses. Malta is well served by the major shipping firms and has a large choice of competitive freight-forwarders.

The EU and Mediterranean links
EU With EU membership in 2004, Malta became the most southerly European Union member state and has a special contribution to make to the Union through its historic, long-term links with north African neighbours. At the same time, Malta has leveraged on its English-speaking, highly-educated workforce to attract foreign direct investment from companies seeking a cost-effective base from which to enter markets in the EU and the wider Mediterranean region.


Malta Fact File:

Country’s full name: Republic of Malta (Repubblika ta’ Malta).
Capital city: Valletta
Population: 400,000 (2006).
The Maltese IslandsOfficial language: Both Maltese and English are official languages.
Currency: euro . Malta joined the euro zone on 1st January, 2008
Location: 93 km south of Sicily and 288 km east of Tunisia.
International dialing code: +356
Internet domain: .mt
Area: Malta is composed of three major islands (and 3 minor):
Malta » Island 246 sq km (94.9 square miles)
Gozo » 67 sq km (25.9 square miles)
Comino » 3 sq km (1.1 square miles)
Terrain: Mostly low, rocky, with dissected plains and many coastal cliffs.
Climate: Mediterranean with hot dry summers and mild winters. Annual rainfall is 23 inches and falls mostly between October and March. Average temperature
Dec - Feb 13.2c
June - Aug 25.8c
Average annual rainfall (1990 - 2002): 591.3mm


Banking
Malta’s banking system is well regulated by the autonomous Central Bank of Malta which follows a policy of a stabile currency, inflation control and the promotion of a sound financial system.

Imports
Leading trading partners for imports are the other 26 EU countries, which account for roughly 70% of total imports. Imports from the USA amount to 3%, while imports from Asia account for 13% of total imports. Imports of consumer goods account for approximately 25% of total imports whereas industrial supplies account for 45% of total imports and capital and other goods for 17% of total imports.

Exports
Leading trading partners for exports are again the other 26 EU countries, which account for over 50% of total exports. Exports to the US account for 12% of total exports, and exports to Asia 23% of total exports. 62% of total exports consist of machinery, 5% of clothing, 4% of printed goods, and 6.6% of semi-manufactured goods.

Useful links:
» Malta Tourism Authority
» Malta Enterprise
» Malta Airport
» Heritage Malta
» Malta Financial Services
» Government of Malta porta
» Malta Federation of Industry
» Malta Chamber of Commerce

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