Summary of the New Residency Scheme in Malta
- The new residency scheme in Malta is called the ‘Key Employee Initiative’ programme and allows for work/residence permits to be issued to prospective key (non-EU) employees within five working days from the date of the application.
- Changes to the Malta ‘Residence and Visa Programme’ now allow the applicant and main dependents to apply for long-term residence in Malta after five years of residence.
- In addition, parents and/or grandparents of the main applicant and/or spouse can apply to the programme.
This is an attractive relocation destination for individuals and families from around the world, so the new residency scheme in Malta is exciting news.
A number of programmes enable High-Net Worth Individuals and Highly-Specialised Individuals to relocate to Malta, providing an opportunity to indefinitely reside in Malta and access to the advantageous remittance basis of taxation.
In 2015 Malta launched the ‘Residence and Visa Programme’ enabling applicants from outside the EU and their dependents to obtain residence in Malta. A number of changes have recently been introduced making this regime even more attractive.
Recently Malta has introduced a new programme, the ‘Key Employee Initiative’. Details regarding this programme and the changes introduced to the Residence and Visa Programme are summarised below:
‘Key Employee Initiative’ – the New Residency Scheme in Malta
The Malta ‘Key Employee Initiative’ provides a fast-track service to highly-specialised non-EU nationals employed in Malta. Under the scheme, work/residence permits are issued to prospective key employees within five working days from the date of the application.
The scheme is applicable to managerial and/or highly-technical professionals with relevant qualifications or adequate experience relating to a specific job.
Approved applicants are issued with a residence permit valid for one year. A permit may be renewed for a maximum period of three years.
Applicants must provide proof or the following information to the ‘Expatriates Unit’ within ‘Identity Malta’:
- Annual gross salary of at least €30,000 per annum.
- Certified copies of relevant qualifications, warrants or proof of appropriate work experience.
- Declaration by the employer stating that the applicant has the necessary credentials to perform the required duties.
- The ‘Key Employee Initiative’ is also extended to innovators involved in start-up projects, which have been endorsed by ‘Malta Enterprise’.
Changes to the Malta Residence and Visa Programme
The Malta ‘Residence and Visa Programme’ is available to non-EU passport holders.
The following changes were introduced in July 2017:
- The main applicant and dependents are eligible to apply for long term residence in Malta, after five years of residence.
- Parents and/or grandparents of the main applicant or the main applicant’s spouse can apply to the programme, at the application stage. An additional €5,000 payment per person is required. Previously only dependent parents could apply.
- The age limit of 27 for unmarried, economically dependent children has been waived.
- Children of the main applicant and/or spouse, will not lose their residency rights when they reach the age of 27. This applies even if they have become economically independent or are married.
- Children born or adopted by the main applicant after the initial application approval date can be included. A payment of €5,000 per person is required.
The Following Financial Criteria Continue to Apply:
A three-tier investment is required:
- A €30,000 payment to the Maltese Government (this covers the applicant, spouse and children of the applicant and/or spouse) AND
- An investment of a minimum €250,000 in Malta or Gozo, which must be maintained for a minimum of 5 years AND
- Purchase of a property in Malta for a minimum value of €320,000 (€270,000 if the property is situated in Gozo or the south of Malta), OR rental of a property for a minimum of €12,000 per annum in Malta (€10,000 per annum if the property is situated in Gozo or the south of Malta). The property must be owned or rented for a minimum of 5 years.
Tax Advantages Available to Non-Domiciled Resident in Malta
Individuals are taxed on Malta source income and certain gains arising in Malta. They are not taxed on non-Malta source income not remitted to Malta. In addition they are not taxed on capital gains even if this income is remitted to Malta.
Find out more about Living in Malta.