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Employer organisations advocate a less rigid and more business-friendly EU, with PM ahead of EU Presidency

Employer organisations advocate a less rigid and more business-friendly EU, with PM ahead of EU Presidency

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Press Release – 31st October 2016

Addressing existing single market fragmentations should be the underlining priority for the Maltese EU Presidency, according to Maltese employers. Businesses are still facing difficulties to sell cross-border due to member states failing to provide mutual recognition to goods, service-providers are facing barriers to establish cross-border operations due to endless national requirements, and a lack of market surveillance resulting in inferior products from third countries finding way into the European Single Market.

These among other issues were raised by a delegation of employer organisations consisting of the Malta Business Bureau, The Malta Chamber of Commerce, Enterprise and Industry, Malta Hotels and Restaurants Association, GRTU Malta Chamber of SMEs, and the Malta Employers Association, in a meeting with the Prime Minister Hon Dr Joseph Muscat on Monday 31st October 2016.

Furthermore, the Maltese employers argued that the EU should confirm itself as a global actor by reinvigorating the Mediterranean as an area of peace, cooperation and prosperity. It should also make itself more attractive and make it easier for talent from third countries to come to the EU and contribute towards its growth, productivity and innovation.

These points were presented in a document entitled “The EU Presidency – A business Agenda”, which reflect the position of the main employer bodies in Malta.

They are product of lengthy discussion held in the past weeks in which the Maltese employer organisations discussed what in their view are the most relevant EU priorities and on which the Maltese Presidency should ensure progress on for the common good of the EU. In the economic context, the employer bodies said that they advocated an EU which is less rigid and more business friendly with clear, pragmatic and realistic priorities and where the focus is on the concrete delivery of these priorities.

The employer organisations told the Prime Minister they are confident that Malta would step up during the EU Presidency which will take place in the first half of 2017, and that they will continue to offer their full availability to assist in the preparation and the undertaking of the EU Presidency as needed.

The report was coordinated by Mr. Stefano Mallia, Vice President of the Employers Group in the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC).

The Prime Minister was accompanied by the Deputy Prime Minister Hon Louis Grech, Minister for the Economy, Investment and Small Business Hon Christian Cardona, Minister for Finance Hon Edward Scicluna, Minister for Competitiveness and Digital, Maritime and Services Economy Hon Manuel Mallia and Parliamentary Secretary for EU funds and 2017 Presidency Hon Ian Borg.

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