The Malta Independent 29 May 2024, Wednesday
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IMF calls Malta’s performance in the gaming sector ‘exceptional’

Tuesday, 8 May 2018, 17:47 Last update: about 7 years ago

The International Monetary Fund, through its blog, has called Malta's performance in the gaming sector 'exceptional'.

The IMF Blog read that Malta has become a hub for gambling and betting companies, and that nowhere else in the European Union does this sector account for such a large part of the economy.

"While the gambling and betting boom contributes to the country's trade balance and job creation, it also draws attention to a skills shortage and infrastructure gaps the sector is grappling with."


The Blog read that Malta has been going through an economic boom in recent years, and nted the country's economic growth.

Together with the expansion, the blog read, the economy reoriented toward the services sector. "That sector includes gaming firms: providers of gambling and betting services, done the traditional way at lottery counters and casinos, but more importantly online or on mobile devices. In this sector, Malta's advantage over the rest of the EU is staggering both in the relative size of the gaming industry (almost 12 percent of Malta's total gross value added in 2016) and its recent expansion (the share in Malta's gross value added grew by 9 percentage points between 2004 and 2014)."

The IMF noted that by 2016, gaming firms and other related business provided 4.4% of the full time jobs in Malta.

The blog attributed Malta's "exceptional performance" in the field to the country being the first to regulate the online gaming industry in 2004, and to assigning licences to multiple private enterprises. "It also helped that the country is English speaking, and offers business-friendly tax regimes and political stability," the blog read.

It continued to read that Malta keeps refining the sector's regulations, and recently adopted new rules making online gaming firms fully subject to EU anti-money laundering requirements. "These include, among others, transparency in the ownership of companies, and cooperation among national financial intelligence units."

The blog mentioned the digital skills shortage.

The full blog can be read here.

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