Speaking in a recent Conference organised by the Malta Business Bureau (MBB) and the Mediterranean Bank Network (MBN) as part of the EU-funded INVEST project, local entrepreneurs asserted that one of the key ways to establishing a sustainable and successful business is continuous learning. Education, flanked by experience, provides entrepreneurs with tools that enable them to examine their product roadmaps and accurately define their company’s short-term and long-term goals.
Evarist Bartolo, Minister for Education and Employment, reinforced this claim by stating that the focus of good education is indeed holistic learning. He emphasised that, “it does not make sense to speak of differences between academic and vocational education – the only real difference is between good and poor education”.
Aaron Farrugia, Parliamentary Secretary for EU Funds and Social Dialogue, added that the education and training of entrepreneurs can be supported by European Union funds. He further expressed his willingness to continue supporting initiatives that seek to import good practices from other European countries.
Project Coordinators Marika Huber and Marija Elena Borg presented participants with the finalised version of the INVEST Financial Literacy training model, which is a free and publicly available online toolkit (http://www.investproject.eu/), offering 30 hours of training. This toolkit has been specifically designed to address existing gaps in financial knowledge, within both the Maltese and wider EU markets. The gaps were identified following research investigating the existing level of financial literacy amongst entrepreneurs in the five partner countries, namely Greece, Italy, Malta, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom.
MEPs Miriam Dalli and Roberta Metsola commended the work of the MBB in the promotion of financial literacy, which is a key priority on a European level. Increasing financial literacy, explained MEP Dalli, would mean that existing jobs are protected and additional ones are created. She emphasised that “in an age where technology is re-shaping the financial industry with Fintech cryptocurrencies and other technological developments, financial literacy becomes even more relevant”. MEP Metsola added that, “a greater focus on financial literacy skills will go a long way in preventing business failures. It will also ensure that those who do fail, will be more likely to be granted a second chance”.
MBB President Simon De Cesare invited all entrepreneurs in attendance to be among the first to benefit from the INVEST Financial Literacy Toolkit. He asserted that this Toolkit has the potential of making a significant difference amongst the members of the business community, particularly “when considering that in Malta, micro entrepreneurs account for 93.5% of total enterprises and employ 32.5% of the labour workforce”.
Speaking on behalf of the HSBC Malta Foundation, CEO Andrew C. Beane officially endorsed the INVEST project. He went on to announce the commencement of a partnership with the Malta Business Bureau, with the intention of extending the lifetime of this project by reaching out to a wider target audience.
For more information on the INVEST project please visit the following website: http://www.investproject.eu/ or contact Project Coordinators Marika Huber and Marija Elena Borg on firstname.lastname@example.org respectively.
Photos from the event may be found here.
The INVEST Project, co-funded by the Erasmus+ Programme of the European Union, is run by the following European organisations: the Malta Business Bureau and the Mediterranean Bank Network (Malta), Association EFFEBI and Eurocrea Merchant (Italy), IDEC (Greece), Inqubator Leeuwarden (the Netherlands) and Bridging the Future (the United Kingdom)
For more information:
MBB Executive Marija Elena Borg
email@example.com or +356 21 251719