“It is challenging times like these that put the government to the test on the ability to devise and support effective economic measures. Malta stands at a strong economic position to do this.” – Minister Schembri
In view of the current global crisis due to COVID-19, the government recognises that particular sectors of the economy are going through challenging times due to a low demand for their products and services. A global slowdown in the global economy, in particular with regards to travel, is significantly affecting consumption in both international and domestic markets. In this situation, the government is working to launch significant economic measures to support those businesses which are being impacted by this economic slowdown.
This was announced by Minister for the Economy, Investment and Small Businesses Silvio Schembri, whilst launching the 10th edition of the National Enterprise Support Awards (NESA), aimed at encouraging an entrepreneurial society.
Minister Schembri said that Malta is set to face the challenges brought about by COVID-19 from a strong starting point. “It is challenging times like these that put the government to the test on the ability to devise and support effective economic measures. Malta stands at a strong economic position to do this. The measures that will soon be announced are possible thanks to a mindset which fosters the creation of a surplus that this government has generated over the years, as well as a thriving economy. The decisions taken and those that shall be taken are in the best interest of our country and nation,” said Minister Schembri.
Minister Schembri said that the supportive economic measures will be organised in three stages; short-term measures aimed at addressing those businesses with cash-flow problems, as well as medium-term measures and long-term measures to assist those businesses which will be facing decreasing orders for their products and services due to a global economic slowdown emanating from the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as to train their workers and improve competitiveness.
Discussions were held with several stakeholders and will be continuing. In fact, after a meeting held with the Malta Bankers’ Association, HSBC and BOV announced their own initiatives, aimed at helping businesses and individuals facing economic hardship related to the current situation.
During the launch of the NESA 2020, Permanent Secretary for the Ministry Nancy Caruana explained that these awards are aimed at promoting entrepreneurship amongst government entities, private entities and NGOs, with a €50,000 fund.
These awards are open for; government ministries and departments, local councils, public authorities and entities, public-private partnerships, NGOs, trade unions, professional associations, public and church schools, public educational institutions, the University of Malta and business organisations, to submit their projects which in some way boosted entrepreneurial spirit.
Godwin Warr, Director General of the Commerce Department, said that the objectives of the NESA Awards are to identify and recognise successful activities and initiatives undertaken to promote enterprise and entrepreneurship, showcase and share examples of best entrepreneurship policies and practices, create a greater awareness of the role entrepreneurs play in society and inspire potential entrepreneurs in mind to encourage an entrepreneurial society.
For more details, one can visit www.commerce.gov.mt. The deadline to submit applications is Friday, the 17th of April.