The Malta Development Association has welcomed certain aspects of the Government Budget for 2024, which was announced on Monday (yesterday) evening, although it could not help but express its disappointment over some key proposals that were notably absent.
The extension of existing incentives pertaining to the property sector, particularly the schemes offered to first-time and second-time buyers, was especially welcome.
“These incentives were proposed by our association, underscoring our commitment to facilitating accessible homeownership and housing affordability,” said the MDA.
It also expressed its satisfaction about the announcement of a new Condominium Act, which it described as “a testament” to “months of hard work” while singling out its Condominium Services Sector for their valuable input.
Notwithstanding these positive elements, the MDA pointed to a number of issues that were inadequately addressed or simply ignored.
“The MDA expresses disappointment over the absence of new incentives aimed at encouraging sustainable development, notably incentives related to green building,” it said. “To really make progress towards a more eco-friendly approach, it’s crucial that we have incentives in play to inspire everyone involved to adopt construction practices that are kinder to the environment.”
Finance Minister Clyde Caruana acknowledged bureaucratic inefficiencies that “impede progress and fail to yield value” as “an obstacle” to Malta’s economy, but the failure to then introduce any concrete measures to rectify the issue was deemed “regrettable” by the MDA.
Similarly limited attention was given to “critical concerns” such as traffic management and Malta’s infrastructure development: “Clear strategies and initiatives are crucial to address these pressing challenges,” said the MDA.
“In conclusion, while the Budget exhibits commendable aspects, the MDA urges further steps to bolster sustainable development, streamline bureaucracy, and address critical infrastructural issues for a more prosperous Malta,” it said.
Malta Development Association President Michael Stivala speaking during the organisation’s recent annual general meeting
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