The Malta Independent 14 July 2024, Sunday
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Budget 2016: What's in it for you - point by point, how the budget will affect you

Noel Grima Tuesday, 13 October 2015, 07:49 Last update: about 10 years ago

• The Cost of Living Allowance will be €1.75 a week

• Pensioners: no tax increase

• Income tax will be reduced again next year. People earning the minimum wage will continue not to pay tax

• People with an income of up to €9,100, couples with a joint declaration of up to €12,700 and workers who declare to be parents and earn up to €10,500 will not be charged income tax

• Workers with a Single Declaration earning up to €19,500 will save up to €90 in taxes every year. Parents with a Single Declaration earning up to €21,200 will save up to €105 per year

• Married couples with a joint declaration up to €28,700 will save up to €120 and couples who both work but file Single Declarations will save €180 in total

• An experiment: Elderly on waiting list for a government home for the elderly (these were 2,000 and have now come down to 1,490 but the pressure is increasing and in two years may double). Each costs €18,000 a year to government. Those on the waiting list, if they employ a carer part-time or full-time, will get half the minimum wage from the government. Thus they get €400. This is a pilot project and targets some 170 families

• Married couples who earn up to €21,000 each will save €210

• VAT on sports will be decreased from 18% to 7% for gyms and coaches and athletes

• Increased benefits:  €1,000 per child as long as parents earn €3,700 but if, eg, mother takes care of her mother and only one parent works, they will get an additional €150 per child to max €12,700

• Pension to increase for 12,000 (those who get less than €140 a week)

• Minimum pension to near 60% of median wage in some years’ time

• €7,000 for scrappage of car and get an electric car

• €2,000 for quad bikes

• €3,000 for hybrid cars

• €700 for new cars

• Hybrid and electric cars will not pay CVA

• Those over 75 years will still get €300 a year extra

• Through an agreement with employer, one can continue working up to 4 years past retirement . Today 45% continue working beyond retirement. This is not applicable to government employees

• Exemption for the stamp duty for first-time buyers was a welcome measure in last year’s budget, and this will be extended next year. New couples can benefit from up to €5,000 if they are first-time buyers. Those who paid after 1 July this year (when the scheme closed) will be getting a refund

• The contribution by employers for not employing people with disabilities will rise from €800 to €1,600. Next year it will be €2,700. Two years ago the disabled getting a job used to be 100 a year but last year they became 24 a month

• VAT refund for those who bought cars in 2005 and paid registration tax

• Excise on petrol, and diesel to increase by 0.3c. Petrol from I January 3c less, diesel 4c less

• The feasibility study of the Malta-Gozo link has been concluded and a tunnel looks better than a bridge. Next step is €400,000 for technical and geological studies

• The second part of eco-contribution to go, replaced by excise on plastic bottles, chewing gum, plastic equivalent to the eco-contribution that used to be paid but better targeted so as to cope with imports from Sicily

• Cigarettes increase by 30c and chewing gum by more

• The government will continue to work to cut down on precarious employment. There are still companies that are abusing the system, and another 400 workers will benefit from measures introduced.

• Child care centres in Żebbuġ, St Julian’s and Floriana

• Communal solar panels with preference going to those who do not have a roof, eg, apartment dwellers.

• A 30% increase for road maintenance from €10m to €13m

• Tax rebates for parents of children in private schools

• The National Pool Complex in Tal-Qroqq will be modernised. New swimming pools will be constructed in Marsascala, Cottonera, Dingli and Pembroke

• Talks to incentivise companies to come together and transport employees

• Upgrading of Marsaxlokk

• ITS campus will relocate to Smart City at a cost of €65m

• ITS students to get €233

• Gozo students who study in Malta to get help

• Out of stock medicines down from 130 to 5

• Pieces of land to house a number of solar panels for families who cannot, for some reason or other, install solar panels on their own roofs

• Environmental contribution at 50c each night for tourists capped at €5 per trip. PN tried this in 2010 and withdrew it. At that time there was a slump, but now is boom years. MHRA is not in favour and wants departure tax but that would mean Maltese will be taxed as well. It will not apply to under-18-year-olds. It will begin on 1 April. Government expects to get €5m from this and this will be administered by the Foundation for the Improvement of Tourism which will change to PPP with MHRA and will go for improvements in tourist areas

• The Gozo cruise liner and yacht terminal project is currently in the negotiation phase and discussions with consortiums who submitted their proposals are underway

• Emergency department: average down from 13 hours to 4 hours in 90% of cases

• Argotti to be joined to other gardens

• €12m for a hub for disabled people

• €50m for the restructuring of government-owned buildings and the development of the same

•  Gas prices to remain fixed throughout winter

• A new block with 68 beds will be added to Mater Dei Hospital. This is good but not enough, and a new block with 300 beds is in the pipeline

•  Free advice on how to save energy

•  Tax credits for businesses who organise communal transport for employees

•  Significant progress has been noted on studies regarding the construction of a Gozo airstrip

•  All athletes to pay 7.5% income tax, basketball, volleyball and gymnastics academies planned

•  Judo facilities and running tracks around Malta planned

•  The government will be extending the financial allocation for the Malta Arts Council, and a €500,000 competitive fund to co-finance cultural projects over a three-year period will be set up

•  €80 million a year are given back to families and businessmen through the reduction of energy rates. The government is working on a plan to bring Enemalta back on its feet. Malta will reach the 5% threshold of energy generated by renewable sources.

• €75 million have been collected from the citizenship scheme, with the money to be used for the benefit of Maltese families. 70% of this money will go to the National Fund for Social Development

• Mature students attending courses at the university and MCAST will be given a stipend. The government will also be fulfilling its promise of giving a tablet to all students; this will be implemented as from October

• The government is also offering incentives to drivers who buy vehicles which cause less hard to the environment. Owners of cars which have been on the road for more than 160,000 kilometres will be asked for a VRT test every year. Use of small motorcycles (125cc) will be encouraged with a flat licence of €10 to be introduced

• €56 million will be invested in a new Institute of Tourism Studies which will be built in Smart City. The government will be giving a €233 grant to students at ITS as from the next scholastic year. The government will contribute €300,000 to MHRA for the setting up of the Mediterranean Tourism Forum. The St George’s Bay Regeneration Committee will be set up to co-ordinate the works while a massive private project is under way in the area. The current ITS building will be refurbished to integrate with the development in the area.

• Karen Grech Hospital will be re-developed into a hospital with 320 beds for elderly people, while St Luke’s Hospital will be redeveloped into a hospital for medical tourists. The project will create 1,000 new jobs.

• Heftier fines for those caught under the influence while at the wheel

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