Planning Authority boss Johann Buttigieg touted for position of Lands CEO

Planning Authority chairman Johann Buttigieg is being considered for the position of new Lands Authority CEO after the resignation of Carlo Mifsud

Planning Authority executive chairman Johann Buttigieg
Planning Authority executive chairman Johann Buttigieg

Planning Authority boss Johann Buttigieg is being touted as the next CEO for the Lands Authority, this newspaper has learnt.

A veteran of the planning authority, he served as a senior planning officer there before being appointed CEO in 2013 and more recently executive chairman.

Buttigieg will replace Carlo Mifsud, who resigned his post as CEO of the recently formed Lands Authority after a mere 16 months. Mifsud will now help in the creation of a new authority that will bring under one roof the various regulatory functions linked to the construction industry.

A spokesperson for the Transport Ministry confirmed that a public call for applications would be issued for the post for CEO within the Lands Authority "in the imminent future" while insisting that Buttigieg is currently still the chairman of the PA. 

Buttigieg is paid over €83,000 as executive chairman of the Planning Authority, excluding allowances.

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As PA boss, he has been instrumental in advancing Labour’s expansionist development agenda. He presided over the demerger of the Planning Authority from its environment protection remit, and spearheaded controversial rules for development inside rural areas and high-rise zones.

Last year, Buttigieg insisted that the rate of development and construction on the island was sustainable, despite the rise in development permits issued by the PA.

In an interview with the Malta Business Chamber, he dismissed the idea that a large influx of foreigners was a threat to Malta’s product value, and praised the construction of high-rise buildings.

Buttigieg joined the PA as an enforcement officer before becoming a case officer. He was then appointed senior planning officer, assigned to major projects, and worked on the South Malta Sewage Treatment Plant, the Flood Relief Project, the Ten-T project, and Smart City among many others.