The Malta Independent 27 September 2023, Wednesday
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Secrecy on citizenship programme ‘would have brought more funds’

Malta Independent Sunday, 17 November 2013, 11:08 Last update: about 10 years ago

The decision to keep the names of those obtaining citizenship through the “individual investor programme” secret – which is being revised by the government – was based on financial considerations, Deputy Prime Minister Louis Grech said this morning.

Speaking in an interview which was aired on One Radio, Mr Grech said that those who developed the programme – Henley & Partners – had told the government that guaranteeing anonymity would make the programme far more attractive to prospective clients, and thus generate more revenue.

The government, he said, agreed because it felt that the revenue the new citizens would bring – a minimum donation of €650,000 per investor, who can also pay additional amounts to acquire Maltese citizenships for family members – would help accelerate the country’s progress.

But the deputy prime minister insisted that the government was listening to the public’s concerns, and it was clear that the secrecy was troubling people, leading it to decide to do away with it.

Mr Grech also said that the advantage of requiring a donation – as opposed to investment over time – was that a donation was immediate. The national fund the donations would go to, he stressed, would help address social issues in a more effective way, even though he insisted that the national budget alone was sufficient.

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