Parliament has approved the establishing of a National Foreign Direct Investment Screening Office, a law was presented by the Minister for the Economy, Investment and Small Business Silvio Schembri. The National Foreign Direct Investment Screening Office aims to ensure that foreign direct investment in the country protects security and the public interest. A similar law must be implemented in EU partner countries.
This law provides for the establishment of a board consisting of a minimum of five members and a maximum of seven members appointed by the minister, who shall nominate one of them as chairman. No person may be a member of the board if he is a Member of Parliament, a councillor, a judge, a person declared bankrupt or a person who has committed fraud.
The role of this office will be to ensure that foreign investment does not pose a danger to the country and if such a scenario is detected an investigation will be launched which will even have the power to terminate it.
I can also impose fines ranging from € 1,000 to € 100,000 if a person fails to provide the information requested by the office.