“Financial services are thriving” – FinanceMalta hits back at poor index ranking
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“Financial services are thriving” – FinanceMalta hits back at poor index ranking

No signs of the fragility that the Zyen report implies

The financial services sector is thriving, FinanceMalta has responded, a day after a global services index gave Malta a poor ranking in the sector. 

The number of investment services licence holders went up from 149 in December to 163 in June 2017.

Sixty new funds were established in the first six months of 2017, and the registration of services providers increased from 67 in 2015 to 158 in 2017.

In 2016, FDI was up by €9.5bn to €151.4bn, of which 98% came from financial and insurance activities, and retirement schemes were up from 36 in 2015 to 50 in June. ew company and partnership registrations increased to 2,625 in the first half of this year compared to 2,523 for the same period last year.

New company and partnership registrations increased to 2,625 in the first half of this year compared to 2,523 for the same period last year.

“All these indicators amply show that the financial services industry in Malta is robust and is by no means showing any signs of weakness or fragility as might have been implied in the said report,” FinanceMalta chairman Kenneth Farrugia said.

He was referring to the recent Zyen Global Financial Services Index, where it was reported that Malta fell 8 places from 77 to 85 out of 92 jurisdictions.

Read: Malta as financial services centre drops 8 places since March on global index

Mr Farrugia added that the index evaluates attractiveness on factors such as infrastructure and access to high-quality staff, meaning small jurisdictions such as Malta were always going to be at a disadvantage because of the size of the market.

“However, this does not mean that the country is underperforming, as what really matters is the real life situation where the industry is exceeding all expectations,” he said.

This success of the industry was also being acknowledged and supported by the current administration, which appointed Silvio Schembri as a Parliamentary Secretary for Financial Services, Digital Economy and Innovation under the direct guidance of the Prime Minister. Last week the government also appointed a high profile Malta-UK Business Promotion Taskforce which will be responsible for business promotion of Malta within the UK, he pointed out.

Read: From financial services to the PN, reputation is everything - Chris Said

Other initiatives undertaken by government to support this industry also include the implementation of a strategy for blockchain and cryptocurrencies as well as the publication of a consultation document issued to further strengthen the Malta Financial Services Authority.

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