The Malta Independent 21 October 2021, Thursday

Watch: Ian Borg justifies Marsascala marina because ‘more Maltese are buying pleasure boats’

Wednesday, 25 August 2021, 17:54 Last update: about 3 months ago

Infrastructure and Transport Minister Ian Borg has justified the proposed yacht marina project in Marsascala by saying that an “enormous number of Maltese residents are buying pleasure boats.” 

The Malta Independent on Wednesday asked Infrastructure Minister Borg what the government plans on doing to address concerns from residents, local councils and NGOs regarding the sizeable development. 

Transport Malta released a call for tenders for the construction of a yacht marina sprawling across Marsascala Bay. The 52-page tender document presents a preliminary design for the marina which sprawls across the whole of the bay and caters for a total of over 700 yachts of varying lengths. 

Since then, Marsascala local council as well as several residents, activists and NGOs have spoken out against the development, criticising and saying that this is plan that has forgotten its residents and that would ruin Marsascala. 

Borg said that the government has been following the matter as well as local affairs and it seems that an “enormous number of Maltese residents are buying pleasure boats.” 

He highlighted that in such a situation there are three options. “We can either stop the registration of pleasure boats or bring the pleasure boats ashore in boat yards. However, I am informed that as a country we do not have policies or permits issued for boat yards. Lastly, the third option would be to develop new yacht marinas,” Borg said. 

The 2006 local plan states that Xemxija Bay and Marsascala Bay are two localities which can be used for the development of marinas, the minister said. 

“Since these localities are in the local plan and have been approved by Parliament, the Transport authority decided it would be best to go for the third option. Nonetheless, we are open to discussions,” Borg said. 

Reply to questions put forth by other journalists as to the reason behind water culvert overflows on Central link roads, following the first rain in Malta last weekend, Minister Borg said that this was due to the remaining two layers of asphalt that are yet to be laid. 

Borg added that Infrastructure Malta is endeavouring to clean out all water culverts prone to overflow during heavy rain due to a clog of leaves and rubbish. He gave an example of the San Anton culvert in Attard that flooded with recent rainfall, saying that this was just cleaned on Tuesday.

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