A lot is reported about Malta’s economic growth and there are a number of positive news reports highlighting the country’s constant growth in gaming, financial services, tourism and property. Although most news reports positive growth, we have recently been hit by others which seem to indicate that not all is sunshine in the horizon. Eurostat data reveals that the increase in Malta’s salaries was the lowest when compared to the other countries within the European Union.
This spells good news for employers but bad news for workers! It raises several questions as to who is exactly benefiting from Malta’s economic growth. It also raises the concern that the distribution of wealth in Malta is not just and appropriate. We may be as well ending up in a situation where the rich become richer and the poor get poorer. Whilst this makes the country more competitive in terms of business, the regular everyday Joe will find it problematic to cope with a constantly increasing cost of living.
One of the ironies in all this is that the lower than average salaries are evident in the construction industry, which is a key pillar in the property boom. This leads to the conclusion that there are several workers who are employed from foreign countries working for minimum salaries. This obviously makes things difficult for Maltese construction workers who had grown accustomed to better salaries.
This salary stagnation may create problems for certain segments and is indeed a shock considering that this is a period where Malta is growing economically. With that said, on the other hand, you will see several reports highlighting magnificent salaries for people with a certain education and years of experience. People working in top professional jobs are cited to have jobs well over sixty thousand Euro per annum and some extend to two hundred thousand per annum as per Castille’s latest salary benchmark report. Such conflicting reports make it difficult to determine whether salaries in Malta are actually adequate or insufficient.
One thing seems to be certain, that the two sides between those who earn a very high salary compared to those who earn a low one is getting wider, creating new potential poverty segments where people cannot afford basic needs. Such an example would be certain segments of people who are no longer eligible for a property loan due to a low salary and poor conditions of work.
What is your view about salaries in Malta?