The Malta Independent 14 April 2021, Wednesday

Public consultation on Condominium Act launched

Jake Aquilina Thursday, 4 February 2021, 14:38 Last update: about 3 months ago

A public consultation on the Condominium Act of 1997 has been launched, Minister for Justice, Equality and Governance Edward Zammit Lewis announced on Thursday.

The Minister was joined by Parliamentary Secretary for Citizenship and Communities Alex Muscat and Parliamentary Secretary for Lands and Construction Chris Agius.

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A condominium is a building or group of buildings where common areas of such buildings are utilised by two or more persons.

This public consultation is one of the first steps in order to amend the Act so that it can follow updated ways of living for citizens of Malta, whereby Malta has seen an increase in such types of buildings. The consultation will seek to analyse how the law can reduce litigation and address people’s concerns when it comes to common areas of such buildings.  

“Our aim is to see where the law can be improved, and to address certain developments in the last 20 years,” Minister Zammit Lewis said.

“This public consultation will take place until the 31st of March in order to listen to what the public has to say and to have a wider spread of opinions on the topic. I encourage anyone of interest to participate.”

The Minister also noted that the law “needs to have flexibility” as there are cases where you would have a building with four blocks of apartments, and some which have over 10 apartments.

Muscat echoed the Minister’s words, saying that “the idea is to have a law more reflective to nowadays scenarios.”

“This law will affect thousands of people as it concerns their homes. Today statistics are showing that a lot of people live in an apartment. They all have to use a common area. The start of a public consultation is something which makes sense in our country as we need to start looking at ways to improve the law.”

Muscat noted that the fact the people are sharing common areas comes as no surprise in the Maltese islands given its size.

“The trend that people are living more in apartments isn’t something that is going to change. We have land limitations here; vertical buildings make sense in our country,” he said.

“You would have invested in your place, but the common parts are creating problems. It is important to have laws that manage these situations. This can also create a new opportunity for people who offer professional services. In a reality of Malta being more cosmopolitan than it has been before, it is important to adapt.”

Agius mentioned that the amount of apartments located in Malta has gone up by around five times since 2013, so “it is obvious that we need to see how the common parts of such buildings are regulated.”

 

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