The Malta Independent 3 February 2023, Friday
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TMID Editorial: Most youths want to leave

Saturday, 26 November 2022, 12:22 Last update: about 3 months ago

The majority of young youths and young adults in Malta (77% of Millenials and 72% of Gen-Z) would rather live outside of Malta, a survey conducted by EY has found.

The statistic shows an increasing trend in people preferring to live abroad.

Only 28% of Gen-Z and 23% of Millenials said they would rather live in Malta, the survey found. Comparing this to the same survey last year, the percentage of Gen-Z remains identical, but in the 2021 survey when it comes to Millenials, 26% had indicated they would rather live in Malta, meaning that a 3% decrease in the number preferring to live in Malta has been registered in the space of one year.

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“Better employment and salaries are the top scoring factor for both generations. Gen-Z also have a hunger for new experiences and feel a constraint in Malta’s size. Millennials also would like new experiences but give a greater priority to being in a space that is quieter and more relaxing than contemporary Malta,” EY said.

This statistic raises alarm. For one thing, it is clear that both generations are concerned about the salaries they receive.  This could possibly, at least partly, be attributed to the rising prices as a result of inflation. But regardless, they consider that there are better employment conditions abroad. This is something local companies are going to have to deal with. The last thing this country needs is a brain drain, where the best and brightest would look to other countries.

Something else that needs to be considered is that Millenials seem to be getting fed up with Malta’s cosmopolitan growth. This newsroom has long argued how Malta needs to take better care of how it wants to develop, and needs a long-term vision in terms of what we want our country to look like down the line. Do the Maltese really want a cosmopolitan Malta? Are we overdoing it?

According to almost three quarters of youths, Malta’s biggest challenge is overdevelopment, the survey found. This result has gone up 6% points since last year’s survey. Following it is traffic that has increased by 24% in one year. In third place comes inflation, the survey read.

The good news is that the survey found that Maltese youths are relatively happy. “Both Gen-Z and Millennials take comfort in their relationship with friends and family and find their studies or work to be fulfilling.”

“But their anxieties and worries are all too real and familiar. The survey suggests that the top anxiety factors for Maltese youths are financial and career pressures. In 3rd place Gen-Zs classify school as their source of anxiety while Millennials are concerned about their health.”

The survey provides a snapshot of what Maltese youths are thinking… their concerns, worries, their preferences. It provides a snapshot of things that need to be fixed in the country, or issues that need to be tackled. We hope that politicians are taking note.

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