Working in Malta
Malta has a highly industrialised, service-based economy and expats working in Malta will find themselves at a pivot point between Europe, Africa and the Middle East.
Job market in Malta
Malta is popular with European retirees and workers in the online gambling industry. It also attracts foreign investors with a well-trained workforce and low labour costs. Its EU membership is attractive in its own right, but an added bonus is that the island has been less affected by various financial crises than other Eurozone countries while maintaining low unemployment rates. Still, as conditions in Europe have started to improve, so has the economy in Malta.
The Maltese economy is government-regulated, but there is a large emphasis on free enterprise and privatisation. The economy depends on foreign trade, electronics manufacturing, tourism, online gambling and financial services. There is a growing film industry and many well-known movies have been filmed in Malta. It also houses one of the largest merchant marine fleets in the world, attracting international shipping companies with favourable legislation and low taxes.
The online gambling sector attracts a large amount of foreign workers and is a major contributor to Malta’s expat population, being one of the few countries in the world to grant licenses to online gambling operators.
Finding a job in Malta
Most expats who don’t speak Maltese end up working in IT, internet gaming and call centres, or set up their own business in the country. Smaller businesses prefer local candidates who demand lower salaries and don’t need to adapt as much. Another plausible avenue for expats is to work for a Maltese company with foreign interests.
Although it is easier for citizens of the EU, it can be difficult for expats from other countries to find a job in Malta. These foreign nationals require a Maltese work permit and a local job offer, as well as possess skills that are lacking in the country and work in a sector with a particular demand for workers.
Expats looking for a job in Malta should search online or through local newspaper listings, or consider working through a recruitment agent. Organisations such as the Malta Chamber of Commerce host seminars and gatherings which provide a good way to network with other expats.
The working week in Malta differs according to industry, although employees should not work more than 48 hours a week by law, unless they consent to do so. In most cases, employers are required to pay overtime.