Carmelo Stivala Group submits €38.5 million bid to rehabilitate Pixkerija

Four bids were submitted for the rehabilitation of the old fish market site, known as il-Pixkerija, in Valletta in a process that will see the fish market building and adjacent buildings given in a 65-year concession

The Old Fish Market building (Photo: MSPP)
The Old Fish Market building (Photo: MSPP)

Carmelo Stivala Group, whose CEO and one of the ultimate beneficial owners is Michael Stivala, president of the Malta Developers Association, has submitted a €38.5 million bid for the rehalibitation of the old fish market site, known as il-Pixkerija, in Valletta.

Other bids were submitted by Bonnici Brothers Ltd.

A call for proposals for the project was issued in March 2023 and specified a minimum investment of €18 million for a 65-year concession.

The site, located in Barriera Wharf in Valletta, has immense scenic value as it abuts on the Valletta fortifications and thus enjoys unique spectacular views of the Grand Harbour, Fort St. Angelo and the Three Cities.

It consists of the Fish Market Building (Il-Pixkerija), the former quarantine hospital, and three Pinto stores, which are all classified as Grade 1. It also includes the building that presently houses the Ministry for Energy, Enterprise, and Sustainable Development and the area fronting the buildings and seashore.

All the buildings except for the Ministry building, are in great need of restoration.

Bids had to be submitted by 9.30am today. At 10am, four bids were opened.

Carmelo Stivala Group sumbitted a bid for €38,508,600. 

Bonnici Brotehrs Ltd submitted three bids: one for €242,435 and two listed for nil value.

When the call for tenders was issued, Malta Strategic Partnership Projects Limited, the government-owned company that was entrusted with this project, had said that environmental considerations, during both planning and operational phases are an important part of the requirements within the request for proposals.

“This project forms part of Government’s commitment to regenerate Valletta through the reconciliation of the conservation and maintenance of Valletta’s historical fabric with the transformation of sites into a truly sustainable and living environment,” MSPP said.

Printed hoarding will be required to minimise the visual impact of works and applicants were invited to propose environmental, cultural and social measures and actions to be funded by the applicants themselves with the objective of ameliorating the lower part of Valletta.

Direct revenue for the government from the ground rent and concession fee, amongst others, amounts to circa €615,000 per year, which includes an annual ground rent, fixed at €357,565, apart from the fixed annual permit fee payable to Transport Malta and a concession fee set at €208,250.

€2 million of annual tax revenues are estimated to be generated directly, rising to €4.6 million inclusive of multiplier effects.