If the island life is for you and you’re looking for a place with a strong character, one of the Maltese islands might be a great place for you to settle. It’s one of the most densely populated areas in Europe so you’ll definitely not get lonely. Make friends with locals, who are known for being very friendly, or with one of the 23,000 foreigners from over 150 different countries living in Malta. 

People love the islands for the relaxed way of life, low cost of living and of course the beautiful surroundings that offer tons of outdoor and water sports opportunities. And with over 300 days of sunshine a year and short winters, the island is perfect for sun worshipers and those who like a tropical lifestyle. Serious crime is hard to find and a lot of locals still leave their doors unlocked. 

Many international companies have offices in Malta, creating specialist jobs that need to be fulfilled by people who speak foreign languages, offering interesting opportunities for immigrants. Another appealing aspect about the island is the attractive tax policies and stable financial and political climate. Maltese health care, the sixth best in Europe, is also free when you’re employed.  

Malta is part of the EU so people with citizenship of countries in the European Economic Area (EEA) can move, live and work freely in Malta.

Here are some of the ways to live in Malta if you are a citizen of a non-EEA country:

Investment

  • Malta Residence and Visa Programme (MRVP) - If you purchase property valued at no less than €270,000 (in South Malta or Gozo) or €320,000 elsewhere or rent a property at no less than €10,000 per annum (in South Malta or Gozo) or €12,000 annum elsewhere for five years, you cna apply for residency. You are also required to pay a non-refundable one-time cash contribution of €30,000 and invest €250,000 in a qualified investment to be held for a minimum of five years.  You would not have to renew your visa every year as is required with the Malta Global Residence programme.
  • Global Residence Programme - you can apply for residency if you lease or purchase property as follows:
    • Leasing property - to be eligible under this programme, you need to rent a residence at an annual lease of no less than €8,750 (south Malta) or a minimum of €9,600 elsewhere on Malta. 
    • Purchase property -  you may be eligible for residency in Malta if you purchase real estate valued at no less than €220,000 in the South of Malta, for €250,000 in Gozo or €275,000 elsewhere in Malta.  
    • For lease or purchase of property, you need to show that you will pay a minimum of €15,000 in tax.  At a high level, this means that you would pay 15% tax on income received from foreign sources and so a minimum of €100,000 in foreign annual income is required. Alternatively, you must have free capital of no less than €500,000. There is also a non refundable charge of between €5,500 - €6,000 depending on the location of the property.  

Work visas

  • If you have a recognized university degree or professional experience as well as a work contract or binding job offer, you may be eligible for an "EU Blue Card".   The Blue Card is a four-year temporary work and residence permit.  This also gives you free movement within the Schengen area and enables your family to join you.   If you do not have a work contract or job offer, you can register on the EU Blue Card Network, where European employers can view your details and connect with you around job opportunities.  This is also where you apply for the EU Blue Card.
  • Immigrants need an Work Permit to work and live in Malta. The company you intend to work for must do the application for you so it is necessary to find a job before you make your actual move. The Maltese work permit is employer-bound and loses its validity when your contract ends. How long the work permit is valid depends on the nature of the employment and the contract you sign with the company. Working for more than one company is not possible and generally work permits are valid for one year. 

Through your Family

  • If your spouse is a citizen or permanent resident of Malta, you are probably eligible for residency.  Please note that your status of spouse needs to be legally recognised in this country.
  • See the citizenship section below for more information on residency or citizenship based on descent.

Youth Mobility Visa

  • If you are an Australian or New Zealand citizen between the ages of 18-30, you may be eligible under the Working Holiday Maker programme.

Here are some of the ways to get citizenship in Malta:

Investment

  • Malta Individual Investor Programme (IIP) - If you make a €650,000 non-refundable contribution to the National Development and Social Fund, you can apply for Maltese citizenship.  In addition, there is a contribution for any spouse, children and other dependants. You must also establish a residence in Malta through either (a) purchasing real estate valued at no less than €350,000 or (b) renting a property at no less than €16,000 per year, for a minimum of five years. Lastly, you also need to make an investment of €150,000 Euro for 5 years in Government approved financial instruments.

Through family

  • If you were born in Malta between 21st September 1964 and 1st August 1989, you are a citizen of Malta by birth.
  • If your father was a Maltese citizen when you were born and you were born between 21 September 1964 and 1st August 1989, you are a citizen of Malta by birth even if you were born outside Malta.
  • If one or both of your parents were citizens of Malta when you were born after 1st August 1989, you are probably also a citizen of Malta.
  • If you were born in Malta before 21st September 1964 and one of your parents was also born in Malta, you are probably a citizen of Malta.
  • If you were born outside of Malta before 21st September 1964 but your father and paternal grandfather were both born in Malta, you are a probably also a citizen of Malta.

The passport for Malta allows you to travel to 152 countries without a visa.

Its global rank is 27.

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