About Malta

The Republic of Malta is the smallest EU member state, located 80 Km south of Italy, 284 Km east of Tunisia and 333 Km north of Libya. The country covers 316 square kilometres consisting of three islands – Malta, Gozo and Comino. The Maltese population of 450,000 is steadily increasing with many ex-pats settling here for the buoyant economy, superb climate and exceptionally positive returns from property investments.

History

Malta’s location in the middle of the Mediterranean has historically given it great strategic importance as a naval base, and a succession of powers, including the Phoenicians, Carthaginians, Greeks, Romans, Byzantines, Moors, Normans, Sicilians, Spanish, Knights of St. John, French and British, have ruled the islands. However the history of the Maltese Islands of Malta, Gozo and Comino goes back much further, with the earliest archaeological discoveries suggesting the first settlements probably from Italy dating as far back as 5200 BCE.

Climate

Malta enjoys an agreeable Mediterranean climate with very mild winters and warm to hot summers. Rain occurs mainly in autumn and winter, with summer being generally dry. According to International Living, Malta is the country with the best climate in the world.

Culture

Due to the geographic proximity, Italian influences in Malta remained strong throughout much of the Island’s long and illustrious history, perhaps waning only slightly during the 150 years in which Malta formed part of the British Empire, until gaining independence in 1964. To this day, Maltese language, art and culture, architecture, cuisine and lifestyle are a very interesting melange of Italian and British with some Arabic influences. The Maltese are renowned to be a very friendly people who often speak fluent English and Italian apart from their native Maltese language, which sounds like a modern form of Latin Arabic.

Economy

The Maltese economy depends largely on foreign trade consisting mostly of freight trans-shipment, manufacturing of electronics and other goods and services and tourism. According to Eurostat data, Maltese GDP per capita stood at 88 per cent of the EU average in 2015 with €21,000.

Tourism

Malta attracts some 2 million tourists every year and tourism is a very important sector of the Maltese economy, contributing approximately 15% of the country’s GDP. The island’s rich history and culture, as well as aquatic activities associated with the Mediterranean Sea are the main attractions for tourists coming mostly from the UK, Italy and the rest of Europe.

Time zone

Malta is in the Central European Time Zone and uses Central European Standard Time (CET) which is 1 hour ahead of Greenwich Mean Time (GMT 1). Like all European states Malta reverts to summer (Daylight-Saving) Time and local time is shifted forward by 1 hour. As a result, during Summer Time, Malta is 2 hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time (GMT 2). At the end of the summer months, time in Malta is shifted back by 1 hour to Central European Time (CET) or (GMT 1).

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