Chamber of Commerce calls for task force on Malta Files

The Malta Chamber of Commerce has called on all technical and professional financial services stakeholders to form a task force to tackle the effects of the publication of Malta Files

The Chamber said that it is offering its 170 years of experience, to bring together all impacted stakeholders to produce a common front on this issue
The Chamber said that it is offering its 170 years of experience, to bring together all impacted stakeholders to produce a common front on this issue

The Malta Chamber of Commerce, Enterprise and Industry has called on all technical and professional financial services stakeholders to form a task force to tackle the effects of the publication of Malta Files.

Relying on 100,000s of documents published by the European Investigative Collaborations, the Malta Files detail how the island is used as a European centre of tax avoidance. Although profiting from the advantages of EU membership, Malta also welcomes large companies and wealthy private clients who try to dodge taxes in their home countries.

Every year, Malta receives over €240 million in international tax receipts thanks to its unique tax system, which gives foreign shareholders up to six-sevenths of the 35% tax they pay on profits generated overseas and booked in their Malta holding companies.

According to the Chamber, the Malta Files episode triggered “a series of attacks on the integrity of the country’s fiscal structures and financial services industry.”

“There has never been a time when the country needed to form a common and undivided front more than today,” it said.

The Chamber added that it is offering its 170 years of experience, to bring together all impacted stakeholders to produce a common front on this issue.

“In an open and investment-based economy like ours, the Malta Files and the ensuing inferences endanger the entire economy. We need to build on the decades long political consensus that contributed to the setting up and continued success of the financial services industry,” it said.

Both Prime Minister Joseph Muscat and PN leader Simon Busuttil have insisted the expose has not revealed anything illegal about Malta's taxation system.

Muscat dubbed the Malta Files “an unprecedented attack” on the island’s financial services, noting that nothing in the Malta Files was actually secret.

On his part, Busuttil said he strongly disagreed with the reports, arguing that no offshore companies are registered in Malta and that the island is not a tax haven. He extended the Party’s support for the financial services, adding that he PN will announce its emergency plans for the financial services sector after meeting with financial practitioners this week.

The Chamber welcomed the commitment by both political leaders towards what it called “defending Malta’s reputation”, and called on them to continue to do so in a united fashion. 

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