The Malta Independent 24 October 2020, Saturday

Second round of COVID-19 government vouchers to be distributed – Abela

Shona Berger Sunday, 18 October 2020, 12:34 Last update: about 5 days ago

The COVID-19 government vouchers will once again be distributed in order to help the economy even further, Prime Minister Robert Abela announced on Sunday.

Speaking during a Labour Party political acticity during which he answered questions by those present, Abela said that following the huge success of the last voucher scheme which was announced back in June as part of the Government’s post-COVID-19 economic recovery plan, another round of vouchers will be given to the public.

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Prime Minister Abela was accompanied by Infrastructure Minister Ian Borg and Cospicua mayor Alison Zerafa Civelli.

With regards to the main principles that are expected in Monday’s 2021 Budget, Abela reassured the public that it will be a good budget; one that will shape Malta’s expenditures in the next 10 years.

The 2021 Budget will not solely be catered for the current COVID-19 pandemic we are in, but the emphasis will be on our socialist principles, he said.

“We will be announcing measures that go directly into people’s pockets. A total amount of €100 million will go to the social part of this budget but also to measures that will incentivize consumption, therefore the government’s contribution to social measures will triple” he said.

He added that the main themes of the budget include reassurance, hope and courage, and emphasised that the pandemic will not affect the quality of people’s lives.

In addition, the budget is based on three important aspects including socialist principles, the determination to strengthen the working sector and the economy, as well as the importance of moving forward.

 

In answer to a question on the new COVID-19 restrictive measures that were announced on Friday during a press conference, Abela said that the government has always focused on two main principles which involves keeping a balance between the economy and people’s health.

“Every leader in a European country knows that it is crucial that this balance is maintained,” he said.

Abela admitted that “although certain things to curb the situation could have been done in a better way, Malta will still be seen in a positive light with regards to the way we are handling the pandemic, despite the negative predictions we had, including statisticians telling us that the death rate will be extremely high.”

He appealed to people not to politicise the pandemic but focus on being disciplined, responsible and make sure to take care of one another especially the elderly and vulnerable during this period.

Speaking about Malta’s infrastructure, Abela said that Malta has seen a great increase in its population and in the number of foreign workers.

“The solution is not to stop foreigners from working in Malta because we need them.”

 

He made a clear distinction between irregular immigrants and foreigners coming to Malta for work as they are completely different.

Abela explained that if we were to disallow foreigners working in Malta, this would only lead to a disaster.

The increase in foreign workers and simultaneously in Malta’s population results in an infrastructural change not only in our roads but also in education, industrial and digital infrastructure as well as social housing for Maltese and Gozitans.

Infrastructure Minister Ian Borg spoke about the Central Link Project and said that despite all the bumps, this project was developed for the good of our country.

“This particular project entailed a decision not liked by many, but it was a decision for the common good as it will lead to less traffic and car emissions,” Borg said.

He added that once the Central Link Project is completed, the country will have more trees.

In addition, with regards to the Marsa Junction Project, Borg remarked that three more flyovers will be opened in the coming hours.

He also announced that in the coming days, all seven Marsa flyovers will be opened.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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