Economic prosperity evident during festive season – Muscat

The Prime Minister said that while his administration would continue addressing the needs of those who had not yet benefitted from the country's economic growth, the big picture showed people were better off

Prime Minister Joseph Muscat
Prime Minister Joseph Muscat

The festive season has shown that people were benefitting from the country’s economic growth, according to Prime Minister Joseph Muscat.

Speaking during a brief phone interview on ONE radio, the Prime Minister insisted that in addition to economic data, people’s spending over the Christmas period was as good an indicator as any that people were better off today than they were in the past.

“One could see the benefits of the economy in people’s pockets, in the streets and in shops,” said Muscat, adding that people had more disposable income, which they spent. “This is a clear and direct result of decisions we are taking.”

Despite the fact that many were doing well, said the Prime Minister, government needed to consider those who were not doing as well, including those unable to keep up with rent, or who were living in a state of poverty.

Muscat stressed that while the government would continue working to improve the situation for all people, it was clear that people could feel the change, pointing to the fact that pensions would once again be increasing this year.

The Prime Minister said his government had continued to take important decisions this week, such as the withdrawal of the bank guarantee granted to Electrogas, and the transfer of the hospital concession granted to Vitals Global Healthcare to an “experienced and reputable company”.

On the concession agreement, Muscat said the government was prepared to discuss the latest developments in parliament, insisting however that it was absurd for the government to be criticised by Nationalist MP Stephen Spiteri, who was reported to have been caught selling medical certificates over the phone.

Turning to the Valletta 2018 celebrations, which are set to commence later this month, Muscat said he was looking forward with optimism to the celebrations, adding that government would continue to invest in improving the capital city's built environment.

“This is not a project of one government or the other, but of the whole nation,” said Muscat.  

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