Malta being greylisted by Moneyval could be as devastating as the COVID-19 crisis itself, the Malta Employers’ Association has warned.
“Malta should never have come to a state where Moneyval is breathing down our necks to put our house in order,” said MEA president Doris Sammut Bonnici.
“Malta’s image has been devalued as the country has been rocked by a successive series of scandals that have drawn the attention of the international media.”
After failing a Moneyval test back in September 2019, Malta was given one year to address its shortcomings in its anti-money laundering regime.
As deadline day looms over, a failure to pass the test could place Malta on Moneyval’s greylist which will see the island subjected to enhanced monitoring procedures.
“Our financial services and igaming sectors built a formidable competitive advantage over the years,” Sammut Bonnici continued.
“No matter how resilient our economy is, it will not be able to withstand a contraction of the financial and igaming sectors, an ailing tourism industry and a fall in manufacturing output simultaneously. Businesses and people will suffer if this scenario becomes a reality.”
The MEA warned that Malta’s efforts throughout the pandemic are at risk of being undermined unless hard and radical decisions are made to restore good governance. To this end, the MEA made reference to its proposal to promote pay transparency in government and the separation of party financing from corporate donations or “coercive practices like door to door collections.”