PM: Joint oil exploration with Italy

Tuesday, 16 Jul 2013, 14:42


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Prime Minister Joseph Muscat during the meeting with Italian Prime Minister Enrico Letta in Rome last Tuesday, spoke about the joint oil exploration with Italy, investment opportunities in Malta and the country's banks as well as the irregular immigration solution.


Speaking to Bloomberg journalist Karl Stagno Navarra, the Prime Minister pointed out that he believes there is a “willingness” among his counterparts for the union to be created. “On our part, we don’t want too much ex-ante coordination for example, but we favor the union.”

European leaders have mandated the European Central Bank with supervising financial institutions and committed in late June to reach agreement on a single resolution mechanism by the end of the year. Germany has expressed concerns about the use of taxpayers’ money and said the plan may conflict with the EU’s basic laws by taking away national control over finances.

The Prime Minister hailed ECB's work, saying it has effectively defended the euro and been “a bulwark of stability.”

Responding to concerns by the International Monetary Fund that Maltese banks are heavily exposed to the local property market, the premier said that financial institutions are “properly capitalized and conform to all the rules.”

“The banking system in Malta is not a problem,” he said, adding that the IMF report praised the country’s growth and resilience, thus “dispelling any Cyprus-like rumors.”

Malta has one of the highest growth and lowest unemployment rates in the euro area, its fiscal position deteriorated last year, when the deficit rose to 3.3 percent of gross domestic product. Joseph Muscat's government promised to reach its deficit target of 2.7 percent by year-end.



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