The impact of COVID-19 on businesses in Malta

The wide-reaching impact of COVID-19 is still being felt around the world

The wide-reaching impact of COVID-19 is still being felt around the world. Many economies have been impacted negatively with the world experiencing economic woes not seen in almost a hundred years. Malta is one of the many countries experiencing major economic difficulties.

So many businesses in the country shut down their operations with the announcement of the initial legal notice 76 of 2020. This notice causes many businesses such as restaurants bus cafeterias gymnasiums cinemas and many others to close down.

Many other businesses had to close down after the introduction of the legal notice 95 of 2020. It led to the stoppage of activities of non-essential retail outlets as well as outlets offering non-essential services. Businesses affected by this notice include those selling clothing sportswear and others.

Because of this, many businesses were left without a source of income and were not able to pay the salaries of their employees. This meant many families and individuals had to survive without their source of income.

Businesses had to be creative to keep operating

Many businesses had to come up with creative ideas to keep afloat. Many of them moved online, where people only order what they want online and get their goods delivered to them. The newly introduced lockdown laws still allowed for delivering services.

Other businesses in the gambling industry such as  had to ramp up their online presence to operate effectively.

However, many of such creative initiatives needed some level of investment on the part of the business. Although some businesses were able to make the necessary many others were not able to do so.

Government measures to mitigate the effect of the pandemic

The Maltese government took steps to lighten the effect of Covid-19 on the economy and people by introducing some initiatives. It first began with the Malta Enterprise introducing a scheme that aids businesses to invest in the teleworking system which helps them function despite the pandemic. The scheme is directed at both large and small scale businesses. To be eligible for the scheme, a business must have a formal teleworking agreement that is linked to the workplace through a VPN.

Tax incentives by the government

Another initiative introduced by the government aimed at alleviating the effect of the pandemic is postponing some tasks due by March and April 2020. These tax incentives were aimed at companies experiencing a massive downturn in revenues due to COVID-19. It is aimed at industries such as transportation, entertainment, manufacturing, tourism, and others according to the Malta Enterprise.

The government began funding two days of salary, every week for people working in sectors that have been hit hardest by COVID-19. This includes industries like entertainment, food and beverages, language schools, and accommodation.

The Maltese government also attached several measures and incentives for parents walking in the private industry and other businesses to help them cope with the effect of the pandemic.

Final verdict

However, these measures and schemes can only go so far. Many businesses and employees have lost their source of income. They still have to deal with the harsh reality that things won’t be returning to normal anytime soon. The rate of unemployment is through the roof, reaching new levels not seen for decades. The Maltese government will have to introduce more effective policies to mitigate the Covid-19 impact on the economy. With the right policies, citizens can be able to make ends meet.

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