400 sales managers arriving for training event in Malta
Around 400 EF sales managers will be arriving in Malta tomorrow for training, EF global president Eva Kockum said this morning.
She was speaking during a visit to the EF school of English in St Julian’s, which has recently gone through a €1 million refurbishment exercise and where a further €1 million are being invested next year.
EF Malta director Roger Bugeja said the company invested a lot in online learning, it set up two computer laboratories and provided enough iPads for two classes.
Once students left Malta, they were also given some months of online access for further learning.
The company was also investing in various applications for iPad for further learning through greater use of technology.
Ms Kockum said that the main market is Europe, namely Italy, Germany, France and Scandinavia, but said the school also wanted to increase influx from other countries, such as Japan, China, Brazil and Mexico.
There were a number of visa issues, however, and she hoped this would change in future.
She said that EF’s main market was young people but the school was also focusing on mature students, which would allow for a year round influx of students.
Tourism Minister Mario de Marco said that the teaching of English as a Foreign Language was a very important market for Malta with 70,000 students coming over each year. A third were EF students.
This was one of the most important niche markets in Malta and the results meant there were reasons for continuous investment.
One had to plan long term, he said, as he praised Ms Kockum for the school’s attempt to reach over to the mature market. He noted that 1,400 people worked as teachers of English as a foreign language in Malta.
The spill over, he said, was even wider as there were 1,100 host families in Malta, 500 of whom were employed by EF.
Dr de Marco said that while the average length of stay of students from Europe was two weeks, those coming from beyond stayed much longer – students from Korea, for example, stayed for about nine weeks. He agreed that more flexibility was needed regarding the visa regime but said that talks were underway and things seemed to be improving.
EF has a global presence in over 60 countries and employs 34,000 people.