'We want the elderly to remain in the workforce, living in the community longer' - Robert Abela

Prime Minister Robert Abela said that the government's incentives are aimed at improving the quality of life of the Maltese

Prime Minister Robert Abela (Photo: Partit Laburista)
Prime Minister Robert Abela (Photo: Partit Laburista)

Prime Minister Robert Abela said that the incentives targeted for the edlerly in the budget are part of a strategy to help the elderly remain in the workforce and reside in the community as long as possible.

During an interview with Manuel Micallef on One TV on Sunday Morning, Abela stated that every measure in the 2024 budget was an encouragement to people and business.

He said that previous administrations had frozen the minimum wage while his was increasing it for four successive years.

Abela emphasised on the additional COLA supplement that around 95,000 families will get. “The cost of this handout will be completely absorbed by the government, and it will be granted every year the Labour Party is in government,” Abela said.

With regards to the elderly, the PM said that the government’s incentives were part of a strategy to help them reside in the communities and stay in the work force as long as possible.

“The elderly will get a 30% increase in their pension if they postpone their retirement. This will help improve the quality of life for our elderly,” Abela said.

He also spoke about the benefits for post-secondary students, saying that the government, “believes that education is the key to social mobility.”

On the energy subsidies Abela said that this was crucial in helping businesses survive and that if his government did not intervene, “the repercussions would have been much worse.”

Abela said that he did not expect the deal on the minimum wage to be sealed as early as it did.

“This is a record and unprecedented increase. I’m most proud of the fact that we managed to get the social partners around the table and agreed on the deal,” Abela said.

“The one displeasure I have is that the Opposition Leader was invited to the signing of the agreement and instead he chose to boycott the ceremony. Not even Simon Busuttil had done that in 2017.”

Abela said that the PN was trying to make people forget about the budget and instead “only spoke about the courts and everyone they wanted to put in prison.”

He also criticised the Opposition for not issuing a pre-budget document.

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