Whilst Brexit and its implications are expected to be both disruptive and far-reaching, there is a silver lining as far as Malta is concerned. Britain’s exit from the EU will mean that Malta and Ireland will be the two remaining English-speaking countries in the EU which puts the country in position as an option for financial services companies looking to relocate.
Several UK firms and companies have looked at the possibility of setting up in Malta, some to use the island as a base and others to use it for passporting rights into the EU. Whilst it is still early days and Article 50 is still yet to be triggered, the level of interest shown at this stage is promising for the future.
Kenneth Farrugia, the Chairman of Finance Malta stated that “as a non-Member State the UK will be unable to benefit from the passporting rights currently enjoyed by companies that are operating from any EU jurisdiction. Consequently, it is natural that financial services companies that are currently operating in the EU are surely giving strategic considerations to the way they will be able to sustain their business plans post-Brexit.”
Considerations are expected to include setting up operations or subsidiary’s in an EU member state or the redomicile of their business from the UK to another EU state.
It is easy to see why Malta is an attractive domicile; the workforce is highly educated and multilingual with most of the population speaking English, the legal and regulatory frameworks are comprehensive and modelled somewhat on British Common Law, and the country enjoys inherent political and economic stability which are all key factors when choosing a new location for conducting business.