Code of ethics for developers to be published - association
A code of ethics for developers is to be published by the Malta Developers’ Association by the end of the year, association president Michael Falzon said this morning.
He said when being interviewed by di-ve editor Vanessa MacDonald at the Hotel Intercontinental this morning that developers breaching the code would be made to say publicly that they no longer formed part of association.
He said that developers were currently facing more problems than ever before, there is a lull in activity and a lack of work for builders and contractors.
While he acknowledged that there was a lot of supply of uninhabited properties, the stock of unsold properties was not as big as was being assumed, he said.
He accused the government of seeing developers as “a cash cow” and criticised the increase in Malta Environment and Planning Authority tariffs.
“Developers are being made to pay for Mepa collecting lizards,” he said.
Mr Falzon agreed that developers should cover Mepa’s cost of processing applications but not that they should subsidise Mepa for its environmental responsibilities. The planning authority, he said, should never have been made an environment authority.
He also said that the word speculation was being used abusively. This was not a question of developers buying property and letting it lie until prices increased, but developing property and prices increasing naturally. It was true, however, that some developers were taking excessive risk.
Mr Falzon said that while the tax on cement, announced in the budget, was not a big problem for developers, the increase in fuel costs was, since this was used in every process.
He criticised the Mepa reform saying it had increased bureaucracy and everything had to be finalised before applications were accepted by the authority.
Certain details, he said, were unnecessary and were creating a scenario where every applicant was being seen as the enemy.
He questioned who was going to audit Mepa to make sure that applications were processed efficiently.