The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has been reporting on the Malta economy in increasingly good terms over the last three months.
In February 2015, the IMF revised their forecast for Malta’s economic growth from 2.2 per cent to 3.1 per cent for 2014 and 2015, only a few weeks after making one of their biggest downwards revisions of its world economic growth forecast. Put simply, Malta continued to flourish even while the rest of the world did not.
The IMF notes that unemployment was at a record low, despite a large increase in the number of women working, praising the free childcare service and employment measures taken. Overall, the economic growth shown was predicted to lead to a reduction in Government deficit, with debt set to fall below 60 per cent by 2020.
Later the same year, in November 2015, a report was released by the IMF stating that Malta has weathered global shocks well and retained a strong outlook. They commented that a diverse economy and strong domestic funding has preserved stability, and a number of causes including infrastructure investments and income tax cuts accelerated growth to 5.1 percent in the first half of 2015, which levelled out to 4.3 per cent real growth throughout the year. Unemployment remained at record lows.
Looking ahead to next year, the IMF expects further solid growth owing to domestic demand supported by energy infrastructure projects, lower income taxes and a growing female labour force. Minister for Finance Edward Scicluna said of the IMF mission’s concluding statement that it “gives the Government the assurance that its economic and financial policies are well suited and are having the desired effects.”