Wages for third-country nationals in Malta have remained stagnant over the last decade, registering little to no increase over that period, the government’s new employment policy has revealed.
In an honest look at Malta’s entire workforce, the document also examines the current state of play of third-country nationals currently working in the country. It has uncovered that only the highest non-EU national earners have seen any sort of increase since 2012.
However, wages for EU nationals, who tend to be more highly skilled than their non-EU counterparts, has increased substantially even though the number of third-country nationals makes up the majority of the foreign workforce.
EU nationals are even more skilled than Maltese workers, who still occupy under 33% of positions in the lucrative gaming compared to EU nationals who dominate the sector.
When it comes to the number of non-EU nationals working in the country, Filipinos (5,726), Brits (5,482), Indians (5,400), and Serbians (2,527) top the list.
Third-country nationals dominate lower-earning sectors like construction, accommodation, and food services, while also occupying a substantial number of positions in administrative roles.
Around 40% of the construction industry is occupied by non-EU nationals while almost 50% work in accommodation or food services. That number has grown radically over the last ten years when they stood at just 7.9% and 11.7% respectively.
Almost 10,000 non-EU nationals occupy elementary positions according to the figures.
The Employment Policy does plan to address the growing issues in the sector.
Crucially, the government will develop a National Economic Migration Policy to ensure a sustainable flow of workers into the country. Retention schemes will also be introduced to ensure that people who move here stay and build long-term relationships with employers in the country.
Labour migration sectors will also be restricted to sectors that have actual labour shortages and prevent employers from looking to cut corners and erode industry standards.
A digital platform to help support and facilitate the migration cycle in the country will also be set up – which will ensure an effective return or reintegration back into their home country,
A clear distinction between temporary and circular migration should also be set up – particularly in terms of seasonal industries like hospitality.
Issues facing third-country nationals have been under the microscope in recent weeks particularly after a construction worker was abandoned on the side of the street after sustaining injuries while on site.
What do you think of the proposals?