The Malta Independent 5 December 2023, Tuesday
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Alfred Sant MEP Thursday, 28 September 2023, 08:00 Last update: about 3 months ago

To give one greater hope and faith in the future of one’s country, there is nothing better than the fact that on the national scene, “new” young people are emerging who are taking the measure of developments happening in their society and doing so with a commitment to eventually themselves participate in ongoing events.

It seems like this is happening in contemporary Malta with quite a number of young people committed to a worthwhile activism. I do not see it as a problem that in many cases, their activisim is dedicated to just one sector, like the environment. The experience gained in such work, no matter how sectoral, will come in as very useful when later, activists get involved with wider policy issues. And meanwhile, it is to be noted with satisfaction how the participation of young people in the management of local councils, not least as councillors, has continued to increase.


The worst thing that could happen to any society is that its young people are caught in apathy or lack enthusiasm for anything that relates to public affairs. Which is why one should not even worry when young people arise to contest a political position with which one agrees. Better note that their views disagree with one’s own than realize that their attitude is one of apathy.



In Malta, literature is the artistic domain that attracts least interest. Music, the visual arts, theatre and the cinema draw audiences and receive critical attention across a much wider and much deeper front than does literature.

Apart from the courses given at the University and literary initiatives that are somehow linked to the University’s academic activities, the interest that gets shown towards developments in foreign and Maltese literature is scant. The National Book Council strives hard in this respect to improve matters (for which it deserves praise) but even at the book fair that it organizes every year, it is the sellers of remaindered “popular” books who get most patronised by the public.

What is then so contradictory in the overall situation is that more books are now getting published than ever before.



Does a European capital market exist – that is, a European stock exchange  where shares and debentures issued by corporations can be traded? Actually, every country has its own national stock market arrangements. In the main they consist of rather smallish exchanges that can hardly be compared to the American market or for that matter, to the UK one.

Share issuances especially by smes have recently stagnated, if not declined. Yet the “dream” persists of creating a unified European capital market. And indeed, it would not be a bad thing if one could really be established. Too many private investments in the EU are financed through bank loans.

In Europe there exists no financial “culture” similar to that of the US where people are used to the idea of investing directly in firms that are running sizable projects. As a result, US capital markets ride on enormous funds and from the four corners of the earth, attract companies endeavouring to sell their shares. That is also what European corporations are doing: they launch their share issues in the US instead of doing it from Europe.



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