Malta fares well in Eurostat retail trade statistics

Government welcomes European Commission’s report on Malta’s small and medium sized enterprises

The European Commission has classified Malta among the “front runners group” of EU nations which have registered concrete positive signs of recovery in terms of employment, value added and growth in the SME sector over the period 2008-2013.

In a report published today by the EU Commissioner, Ferdinando Nelli Ferroci, Malta’s economy is said to have weathered the crisis of recent years fairly well and so did the SME sector.

SMEs in Malta represent 99.8% of all businesses and account for 73.2% of the economic value added and 78% of employment in the private non-financial sector. SMEs in the business economy have grown consistently.

According to the findings for the period 2008 to 2013, SMEs increased by 4,800 (+20%) to a total 28,905 firms, value added grew at a rate of 16.7% and employment in SMEs expanded with almost net 7,000 jobs, reaching a total of 98,000 (+7.7%).

In its forecast for 2015, the European Commission sees an increase of 1,500 new SMEs, net employment increase of almost 4,000 and value added is also set to expand.

Malta was classified among the only four EU member states that registered “positive and strong performance in terms of number of firms, employment and value added, with gains higher than 3%”.

According to retail trade statistics published by Eurostat, Malta fared in line with the average performance of the members of the Eurozone area and marginally under the EU28 group.

On a month on month basis, volume of retail trade for August 2014 increased by 1.2%. This figure is up from the negative 1.1% registered in July 2014.

Malta’s growth rate in volume of retail trade in August 2014 was in line with the euro area, which also stood at 1.2%, but marginally lower than the EU28 which stood at 1.4%.

However, on a yearly comparison, Malta’s growth in the volume of retail trade stood at 0.8% (August 2014), compared to 1.9% for the euro area and 2.5% for the entire bloc.

“Although yearly growth for Malta was lower than that recorded for the EU18 and EU28, yet it shows an improvement from the yearly decline of 2.7% that was recorded for July 2014,” the government said.

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