What Malta lacks in size, it makes up for in its long history, rich culture and warm people. The smallest of the European Union’s 28 member states, Malta’s strong economy, robust legal system and a young and dynamic workforce make it an ideal nation state from where a business may be set up and operated, while its typical Mediterranean climate, high standard of living, low unemployment and crime rate, favourable tax regime and efficient connectivity make it an ideal place to live in. Malta has two official languages – Maltese and English and is one of the 19 Eurozone countries.
Malta’s service industry is thriving. While traditionally, its main economic sector was tourism, strategic investment and specialised training have led Malta to become a leader in the financial services, shipping and remote gaming industries, to name a few. This would not have been possible without a specialised, dedicated and professional workforce which services these industries in all aspects, enabling each sector to thrive and develop further.
Malta’s well-developed legal system is one of the main characters of its success story, having been shaped by its historical and political realities. Malta’s Civil Code was developed on the basis of the Code Napoleon, while its Code of Organisation and Civil Procedure contains both Continental and British influences. A former British colony, Malta’s Constitution, Companies Act and laws on taxation embody many British legal principles.
EU accession in 2004 necessarily entailed the adoption of the EU’s body of laws. While directives are transposed into local legislation, regulations are directly enforceable.
Malta’s laws are available in both Maltese and English and are accessible through its Justice Services portal.
Malta’s judicial system
Malta operates a two-tier judicial system – a court of first instance presided over by a judge (before the Superior Courts) or a magistrate (before the Inferior Courts) and a court of appeal, which system applies both to the courts having criminal jurisdiction as well as for those having jurisdiction over civil, commercial, family and constitutional matters, while a number of tribunals and boards, including the Industrial Tribunal, the Rent Regulation Board and the Administrative Review Tribunal, hear and determine matters of a more specialised nature.