Economy Minister Silvio Schembri has publicly apologised to foreigners living in Malta for his statement in Parliament yesterday that the government will be prioritising the safeguarding of jobs of Maltese people and that third-country nationals who lose their jobs will have to return to their home countries.
“I am sending out this message to set the record straight in relation to my comments in Parliament about foreigners who work and live in Malta,” he said. “My choice of words was unfortunate and I apologise if I hurt or offended anyone. Myself and the Government are united in our respect to all workers, no matter of their nationality.”
“We are committed to assist employers, employees and self-employed in these difficult days, which I am certain we will overcome together.”
Schembri said the government is proud that the Maltese economy hasn’t only offered a better standard of living for Maltese families but has also opened the door of opportunity for EU and third-country nationals.
“I would like to assure anyone who thought otherwise that we will not be terminating any work permits of third country nationals who are in employment,” he said. “I was neither referring to any European citizen working and living in Malta legally.”
The Economy Minister went on to urge Maltese landlords to be more considerate to tenants in these tumultuous times and adopt flexible rent rates until the economy regains its momentum, a decision some landlords have already taken.
“I thank you for your hard work throughout the past years and look forward to seeing our economy back on track in the interest of everyone living in Malta and Gozo,” he said.