Ta’ Qali crafts village being regenerated through €13 million project

The project, the first phase of which is complete, aims to turn the crafts village into a centre of excellence for artisanry

The crafts village in Ta' Qali is being regenerated through a €13 million project
The crafts village in Ta' Qali is being regenerated through a €13 million project

A €13 million project is regenerating and transforming the crafts village in Ta’ Qali into a modern location for artisan work in Malta, better equipping it to welcome locals and tourists.

The project, the first phase of which is now complete, aims to turn the village into a centre of excellence for artisanry, housing 70 workshops.

Addressing a conference at the unveiling of the project on Monday, Economy Minister Chris Cardona said that the promise to regenerate the crafts village dates back 25 years, but that, despite it having been parts of the electoral manifestos of the previous administration, it as never actually put into effect.

Now, however, through tapping into European Union funds, the project - which is being implemented through a collaboration between Malta Industrial Parks, Malta Enterprise, and the village’s operators - has materialised and is now in its final stages, Cardona said.

“This ambitious project is giving new life to the crafts village, through the investment of almost €13 million in funds, which are seeing the village being virtually rebuilt from scratch,” he said.

He underscored that, through an investment in modern infrastructure, the village is now much more appealing to the eye, with unsightly dangling wires providing services to its various operators now having been placed in culverts underground.

The villages public spaces have been enlarged, a large degree of landscaping work has taken place, and zones have been created for use by families and tourists who visit the centre.

Cardona said that a foundation will be set up to manage the village and to draw up a calendar of events related to craft work, with activities to be planned throughout the year.

EU funds parliamentary secretary Aaron Farrugia highlighted that the project, which - like the ongoing Xewkija industrial park project in Gozo - is being funded by the European Regional Development Fund, will be helping Maltese businesses as well as promoting tourism through providing a place to showcase Maltese artisanry and talent.

Economy Minister Chris Cardona
Economy Minister Chris Cardona

“EU funds are being used to help Maltese businesses, not only from an infrastructural perspective, but also through providing upskilling and through the Business Enhance Scheme, which is making grants available for firms such as SMEs and start-ups,” Farrugia said.

Farrugia said that businesses and enterprises would prioritised in the upcoming EU 2021 to 2027 budget, which is currently being negotiated by the government

He added that over €30 million in EU funds are being directed towards tangible aid to businesses, particularly SMEs and start-ups.

"Apart of this, the European Social Fund is being used to invest in skills for the Maltese workforce, thereby preparing it for current and future industries, as well as in schemes which are generating more jobs, and offering favourable loans and guarantees," he said.

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