29 JANUARY 2003

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German ambassador Georg Merten: To “club members” one usually entertains closer relations

How does Germany view Malta’s entry into the EU?

Germany has always been a fervent promoter of Malta's accession to the EU. Politicians of all political parties have repeatedly expressed the view that Malta's membership within the EU would be beneficial both for the Union and for Malta herself.

Will Malta’s decision on the EU accession have an impact on investment from Germany?

This could be the case as Malta will then be in line with all the regulations of the EU, which will facilitate decisions for investments. But one also has to take into consideration the fact that Malta will have competitors which are the eight acceeding countries in Eastern Europe – they are geographically closer to Germany and will also seek to attract investments to their countries.

How would investment from Germany fare in the future should Malta choose not to join the EU?

Malta would surely continue to be attractive for German investments as it has been in the past, but it would have to make up for the fact of not being an EU country. One of the main reasons for German investments in Malta were the qualifications of the Maltese workforce that is highly skilled and reliable.

How will Malta’s relationship to Germany change with accession?

The excellent relations existing between Germany and Malta will be further deepened and intensified. To "club members" one usually entertains closer relations based on the rules and advantages of membership than to outsiders.

Political and economic cooperation will be institutionalized within the framework and procedure for dialogue and co-ordination existing between EU members.

Next week: Mr Vincent Fean British High Commissioner gives his views


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Editor: Saviour Balzan
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