PN proposes ‘smart immigration’ as antidote to Labour’s cosmopolitanism

PN General Council • Clyde Puli launches PN’s new vision document ‘A Society That Cares’

Clyde Puli (centre). The PN General Council will run from Monday to Sunday with the theme 'A society that cares'
Clyde Puli (centre). The PN General Council will run from Monday to Sunday with the theme 'A society that cares'

PN secretary-general Clyde Puli has presented his party’s economy policy at the PN’s General Council as a long-term strategy for “when the economy is not doing well”. 

Puli said the PN’s strategy was “desperately required... A plan that serves as a compass that would help us even when the climate changes, when the economy isn’t doing well. We cannot just ride the wave of a good economic success without a plan.” 

Puli described Labour’s vision as being unsustainable, depending on foreign worker influx, ironically having graduated from a “call for pushbacks” to a strong support of cosmopolitanism. 

He paid tribute to previous PN government’s economic programmes, which he said had “weathered any financial storm... the industries we introduced years ago are still the backbone of Malta's economic success. For three decades, these industries stood strong.” 

Puli criticised Labour for having tarnished Malta’s reputation, raising the recent suspension of the small bank Satabank as an example. “People just like you and me who had an account there have had their assets frozen. Why? Because we didn’t protect our reputation,” Puli said of the financial regulator’s intervention to stop the bank from continuing business. 

Puli paid tribute to Adrian Delia, for having taken “the risk” to take the government to court over the botched Vitals hospital deal. 

And he said Joseph Muscat was wrong on the decrease of poverty, saying poverty had increased with 2,565 people more at risk of poverty since 2012. “39,867 people were at risk of poverty in 2017. In fact, we are seeing the establishment of food banks all around the country.” 

PN vision 

The PN’s economic programme proposes a clustering strategy to develop investment in services that are provided by industries already in place. “Rather than Malta having to open windows for all kinds of industries, a clustering would make sure that Malta can perfect certain concepts and would invite professionals that would force an increase in wages rather than having workers competing for minimum wages.” 

The PN said clustering would also ensure that there would be a skills transfer between professionals who come to work to Malta and their Maltese colleagues.  

The PN also suggested a lowering of the highest tax rate for small investors, saying “the lowering of taxes was always the essential politics of the Nationalist Party.” 

The document proposes night shelters and day centres for the elderly, and for a social work strategy that can analyse social problems earlier on before they can become a debilitating problem to many families. 

It also proposes investment in open spaces around urban areas that are “suffocated by heavy infrastructure” such as housing and office buildings, and that “a smart immigration policy” would make sure that “the large increase in population would not guarantee bleak developments... A smart immigration involves clustering, skills transfer, and an analysis of the migrant population.”