The Malta Independent 24 October 2021, Sunday

Updated: Fast ferry service between Malta and Gozo kicks off

Tuesday, 1 June 2021, 15:09 Last update: about 6 months ago

Prime Minister Robert Abela was present to inaugurate the new fast ferry service which will operate between Valletta’s Grand Harbour and the Mġarr Port in Gozo on Tuesday. 

The service will be using terminal facilities in Mġarr and in Valletta, in the area known as Ta’Liesse – facilities which were built following a €5 million investment by the government. 

Abela said that the method in which the government had arrived at the setting up of this service was symbolic of that which the government believes in. 

“We believe in a country where the state provides equal opportunities for the private sector to dream and compete.  This with the aim of creating new services for citizens which then generate new jobs and grow the economy”, Abela said. 

Abela said that the service will improve the quality of life for Gozitan workers, saying the a person who works in Valletta will save two hours every day because of the fast ferry – something which will equate to 500 hours in a year, double the amount a person is entitled to in leave in a year. 

The new services will have a positive impact on Malta’s maritime infrastructure as well, noting that in spite of the pandemic, the government had continued to open new projects and getting the country ready for the future.  

Transport Minister Ian Borg said that the fast ferry is another investment which shows the government’s commitment towards “cleaner and more efficient” mobility methods for the country. 

He said that through this project, the government had invested in Gozitan workers who travel to Malta everyday for work, noting that new public transport routes will connect the terminal with the University of Malta amongst others in order to help Gozitan students as well. 

He concluded by saying that the government’s transport plan is a holistic one which looks at the long-term and which will leave an effect on future generations. 

Gozo Minister Clint Camilleri praised the new system, saying that it will help remove some of the weight that journeying between Malta and Gozo had on workers. He said that Gozo will remain Gozo as long as Gozitans can live there, which is why accessibility is indispensable.

Camilleri said that the improvement in connectivity will also benefit Gozitan businesses as it will attract more tourists to the island, especially those who come on short holidays.

Gozo Business Chamber

The Gozo Business Chamber welcomed the launching of the fast ferry service between Gozo and Valletta.

"The Chamber consistently believes that accessibility in all its forms is indispensable for Gozo's economic development. The fast ferry service is another important milestone to ensure multimodal forms of accessibility and connectivity between the two islands," the Chamber said in a statement.

The Chamber believes that this can lead the way for new economic niches especially in the cruise liner sector, while benefiting commuters and Maltese travellers alike.

"Government's decision to liberalise the market was essential for this service to being implemented. The price sensitive and consultative approach adopted by both operators also augurs well for the success of this venture. All this shows that Government's commitment, coupled with the private sector's willingness to invest can create a positive approach while finding solutions from which all can benefit."

 


 

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