Business Opportunities in Malta

November 5, 2018
Read: 8 minutes

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Malta Business Opportunities

Don’t let the size of this island fool you. Malta is one of the fastest growing economies in the European Union with an abundance of opportunities ready to be discovered. 

In this article, we have highlighted a few of the various business possibilities in Malta. Some of which you can start today. 

Malta is a much sought after place for expats and business owners for a number of factors. A few of these include the Mediterranean lifestyle, high standard of living and its renowned climate.

As you will discover in the article, Malta is a unique place to foster both new businesses and expats looking to relocate to the island. It is also worth mentioning that starting a business in Malta is highly beneficial as the island facilitates trade and freedom of movement within the EU.

To explore the best business opportunities the island has to offer, continue reading. 

 Malta in a nutshell.


  1. Top Business Opportunities in Malta
  2. Why is Malta Better for Business?
  3. Why Set-up a Holding Company in Malta?
  4. What is the Minimum Investment to Start a Business in Malta?
  5. Best Locations to Set up a Business in Malta
  6. Final Words
  7. Why Wahaat as your Relocation Services Advisor?

Top Business Opportunities in Malta

It’s no wonder that Malta has garnered an excellent reputation on an international level, in financial services. Malta has several attributes making it an attractive base for a business. There is the low cost required to set up, favourable tax rates, tax incentives and human resource effectiveness to name a few. 

These benefits provide financial service operators with flexible and EU-compliant domicile. Malta’s impressive record continues to attract investors from around the globe. These advantages extend to diverse sectors for starting a business, including:

  • Financial services;
  • ICT;
  • Electronics;
  • Knowledge centre/back-office services;
  • Generic pharmaceuticals;
  • Oil and gas;
  • Maritime;
  • Training and education;
  • Gaming;
  • Aviation; and
  • The film industry.

Being part of the EU, Malta has embraced an encouraging approach to business elevation, expansion and standard of living. 

Malta’s strength and stability lie in its:

  • Excellent telecommunications;
  • Strategic geographical location;
  • Economic and political stability;
  • State of the art transhipment and distribution facilities;
  • Highly skilled workforce;
  • Dedicated and competitively priced human resources;
  • A safe and pleasant lifestyle, rich in culture and entertainment;
  • Top business support services; and
  • Corporate tax benefits.


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Why is Malta Better for Business?

Malta may be a small island nation, however, its impact on Europe is a considerable one.

Firstly, one must look at where Malta is located. In the middle of the Mediterranean sea, it is surrounded by Sicily, North Africa and Gibraltar. This positioning establishes the Maltese islands as a doorway to the European, African and Middle Eastern markets.

Due to its strong geographical position paired with its stable GDP growth during times of global recession, Malta has positioned itself as a profitable domain to conduct business affairs. 

Malta offers an environment that promotes consistent professionalism and regulation. The island also provides fantastic benefits such as a tax-efficient platform which permits business owners based in Malta to offer their goods and services throughout the EU. The several incentives applied in Malta continue to draw individuals and investors to the island, ensuring stable business growth. 

The national development agency, Malta Enterprise, is authorised to promote and facilitate international investments throughout the EU.

Related: Discover Malta

Advantages of Malta Golden Visa & Malta Golden Passport

Why Set-up a Holding Company in Malta?

Besides the fact that it is a member of the European Union, Malta’s laws are set on the basis of the European Acquis. It offers a competitive 35% Corporate Tax Rate on worldwide income to all businesses incorporated in Malta.

Furthermore, shareholders are entitled to claim a refund, which generally amounts to 6/7ths of the tax paid by the company to Malta.

Business Promotion Regulations provide additional sector-specific tax incentives in:

  • Biotechnology;
  • Electronics;
  • Plastics;
  • Pharmaceuticals; and
  • Electrical equipment.

More incentives include tax rebates based on the duration of an operation, ranging from 5% for the initial 7 years, up to 15%.  Holding companies which are based in Malta can enjoy several benefits, including an exemption from stamp duty and capital gains on transfers of shares by non-residents and a favourable participation exemption regime. This makes Malta an attractive jurisdiction for holding companies.

It is interesting to note that Malta has established a network of over 70 double tax treaties, most of which are based on the OECD Model Convention. All of these factors (and more) combine to make Malta one of the most desirable jurisdictions for business opportunities.

What is the Minimum Investment to Start a Business in Malta?

When starting a new business, the most crucial thing to pay attention to is the calculation of expenses and revenue. By carrying out these initial estimations, you will be in a better position to decide whether the business is lucrative or not. You can also calculate when the break-even point will be reached.

Depending on which business you decide to venture in, the investment required will differ. 

A rule of thumb is to estimate expenses 20-30% higher to allow for miscalculations or unexpected costs.

Below you will find listed the most common steps to consider:

  1. Firstly, you need to analyse if you can afford to start a business. This can be carried out by assessing all fixed and miscellaneous expenses.

  2. Once you have carried this out, you must calculate the business cost (How much it will cost to get your business off the ground). Such costs include:

    • Fixed Costs

      • Insurance;

      • Utilities, electricity and the internet;

      • Rent or mortgage payments;

      • Wages/salaries.

    • Variable Costs

      • Raw ingredients;

      • Production materials;

      • Stock orders.

    • Start-up Costs

      • Lease or purchase of buildings or land;

      • Permits, licenses or other compliance costs;

      • Equipment and/or machinery;

      • Vehicles.

  3. Next, you must decide on the cash flow for the first year of business. This will include the forecasts of all the expenses and business income and acts as a prediction to whether further financial aid is needed. Relevant data on the industry and competitor analysis will further add to this income forecast.

  4. It is imperative to employ a capable advisor or accountant who will guide you on how much capital is required to get started.

What is the Minimum Investment to start a Business in Malta?

Best Locations to Set up a Business in Malta

On an island like Malta, location plays a key role in the success of your business and is dependent on the kind of business you would like to set up. Maximum exposure and constant footfall important factors to consider.

Sectors such as finance, iGaming and information technology have experienced accelerated growth in recent years. This has strengthened Malta’s position as a hub for new business ideas, entrepreneurs and creativity.

The locations we have highlighted below offer great potential as a business and commercial property. 



Located across from Valletta, Sliema is a thriving location for several businesses. Situated along the coast, it combines a residential area with many shopping, food and entertainment destinations. Sliema is a centre for tourism and this town is always bustling.



Located just a few minutes north of Sliema, St.Julians is one of the busiest towns in terms of business. This old fishing village is renowned for its vibrant nightlife, seaside restaurants, cafes, bars and hotels. It is popular among locals and foreigners alike throughout the year making it a viable option for steady business.


San Gwann

Located more centrally than the former seaside locations, San Gwann is a mix of residential, commercial and industrial zones. Among the more affordable areas, San Gwann is ideal for startups wishing to make a name for themselves, yet keep costs down.



Mriehel is known as the industrial area in Malta, filled with showrooms and factories. It is centrally located and suitable if you intend on opening a business which requires a production area or storage facilities. 



Located in the middle of Sliema and Valletta Gzira is a hub for igaming offices, financial institutions and hospitality businesses. Due to its location, Gzira is an evolving town, full of potential and perfect for startups. Office space is in high demand and offers a unique opportunity to form part of the growing business movement.



The capital city boasts beautiful offices and spaces for bars and restaurants. Business is booming in the cultural city and draws in people every day for commerce or entertainment, especially at the weekend. Valletta is popular among law firms, maritime businesses, as well as entrepreneurs, venturing in the hospitality industry.


Cost of Buying Malta Citizenship

Final Words

As outlined in this article, there are several reasons why Malta is a good option to establish your business. Not only is the economy thriving, but it is also supported by a generous taxation system which allows you to build and expand your business. 

The climate and easy connections to Europe are a bonus, making business opportunities in Malta exceptional.

Written By
Yashica K. Pathak
Editorial Content Manager

Why Wahaat as your Relocation Services Advisor?

Wahaat is an advisory service firm that focuses on High-Net-Worth Individuals providing three distinct but related services:

Wahaat has a team of professionals and offices located in Malta and Dubai. 

Wahaat, through its affiliate, is proud to be the official concessionaire chosen by the Government of Malta to promote the Malta Residence and Visa Program throughout the Middle East.

Through Wahaat’s and our strategic partner’s presence in over 120 countries, represented by 565 offices, Wahaat has vast experience in the development and provision of holistic services that are tailor-made for each individual client.

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