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  • New VAT rules for broadcasting, telecomms and electronic services

    New VAT rules for broadcasting, telecomms and electronic services

    January 1, 2015 will mark the entry into force of changes to the taxation of telecommunications services, radio and broadcasting (“broadcasting”) services and electronically supplied services across the European Union. This change, which will...

  • Stress and distress in public life

    Stress and distress in public life

    The media is obsessed with focusing on the public lives of people who we all know and sometimes envy for the glamour that seems to surround their lives. But there is another side to being a public figure – a side that is often hidden from public...

  • All gas and waiting

    All gas and waiting

    So far the Government is on track with its major commitment in the electoral programme. That was to revolutionise the energy generation process and lay the groundwork for tariffs to be substantially reduced. Never-on-Sunday was discarded and last...

  • Overcoming the language barrier

    Overcoming the language barrier

    Discriminating between employees or prospective employees on the basis of nationality as regards access to employment, remuneration and other conditions of work is illegal in terms of EU law. Such discrimination may take various forms and could be...

  • Being brave in the new world

    Being brave in the new world

    Not surprisingly, most respondents to the recent EY survey – “Business Pulse: Exploring the dual perspectives on the top 10 risks and opportunities in 2013 and beyond” – believe that revenues need boosting. Yet rather than wait for mature markets...

  • Economic recovery: it’s all about the money

    There are a number of funding options underway in the EU which will play a major role in its economic recovery. The main initiative will derive from the EU Budget itself. The European Council and the European Parliament have agreed on the...

  • Why are the EU citizens so grumpy?

    Why are the EU citizens so grumpy?

    Up to some years ago the debate between euro­philes and euro­sceptics was mainly on whether the EU should persist in its inevitable drive towards a political union. Countries like Britain generally resented this drive to federalism and...

  • Property remains twisted in knots

    The construction and property markets have attracted much attention in recent years. For a long time a main driver of growth in the Maltese economy, they entered into a period of decline due to a mismatch between supply and demand, with the former...

  • Not just making it up: cosmetic rules

    Not just making it up: cosmetic rules

    A new EU regulation that came into effect recently brought about some significant changes in the world of cosmetics. The cosmetics market, consisting of around 500 million consumers, will be served by a single, harmonised piece of legislation that...

  • Unleashing shared value through content marketing

    Companies have to deal with different stakeholders’ opinions, attitudes and perceptions about their behaviour. They need to strike a balance in satisfying numerous stakeholders’ expectations. Businesses cannot please everyone. However, they should...

  • Ageism is a pervasive and dangerous mindset

    Ageism is a pervasive and dangerous mindset

    In the 20th century, life expectancy in western societies increased by about 30 years – greater than was attained in the previous 5,000 years of human history. What used to be the experience of a few has now become the destiny of many. Yet ageism...

  • Bad cash flow in corporations

    Managing cashflow well is key to the success of any economic operator, big or small. The relationship between creditors and debtors is followed with eagle eyes on a daily basis, and in the management accounts. An entity will be chased by its...

  • Misleading commercial practices

    Misleading commercial practices

    A commercial practice that misleads consumers is unfair and hence illegal in terms of EU consumer law. In such cases, there is no need to consider whether the trader acted diligently or not, the Court of Justice of the European Union recently...

  • Engage with your auditors – it’s worth it

    Engage with your auditors – it’s worth it

    Companies on both sides of the Atlantic are seeing their relationships with external audit firms more strictly regulated. In this scenario, could audit committees reduce the perceived need for regulatory action by taking a more formal approach to...

  • EMIR – Do you trade in OTC derivatives?

    EMIR – Do you trade in OTC derivatives?

    If you regularly enter into options, futures, forwards, interest swaps, currency swaps or any other form of derivatives, this article will definitely be of interest to you. Derivative transactions have been largely blamed as being one of the main...

  • Walk the talk

    Walk the talk

    When one’s arguments start to hit home, Government apologists come out with their usual bullying tactics. Frankly I don’t mind and they will not stop me from doing my duty as the Opposition’s Shadow Minister for Finance. For some time I considered...

  • We all deserve a cool office

    We all deserve a cool office

    I don’t know how many times I’ve walked into an office and gasped at how unimaginative or inappropriate offices in general are. I am here thinking of obsolete furnishings, cramped spaces, poorly designed layouts and a host of other “uncool”...

  • How the Celtic Tiger was killed

    How the Celtic Tiger was killed

    Ireland may be the first troubled eurozone country to go back to borrow money in the financial markets as it exits the bailout phase which started when it had to be rescued by the European Commission, the ECB and the IMF in 2010. To get here it...

  • Multiple Opposition boomerangs

    Multiple Opposition boomerangs

    Tonio Fenech, long-serving finance man and now shadow minister, is a man with considerable cheek. He displayed that year after year in his official position, first as parliamentary secretary then as minister. Year after year his estimates of...

  • Enhanced customs enforcement

    The European Parliament recently approved a new regulation intended to give national customs authorities extended powers to detain counterfeit or pirated goods at the borders of the European Union. This new regulation, that enters into force at...

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