15 May 2004

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Malta Enterprise offers financial incentive schemes for SMEs
Parliamentary Secretary for SMEs and the self-employed Edwin Vassallo announced earlier this week a series of financial incentives to improve and facilitate financial access. These included the consolidation of structures such as the Business Angels Network and the acquisition of European Investment Fund shares by BOV. “Malta Enterprise is now going to launch new incentives which will further increase Government’s help towards SMEs. This is an investment in the artisans’ village in Ta’ Qali, which will further aid the development of the area and consolidate the manufacturing sector. To this end, these incentive schemes will be directed to those who intend paying for a factory and its lease, who in turn will be eligible for these funds.”
Vassallo said the financial scheme would be explained to each interested investor personally, which will also include the Parliamentary Secretary himself, who will be meeting with the artisans.
“The capital expenditure of those building their own factories is estimated to reach Lm2.7 million, and these will be awarded a 65-year lease. I am convinced that through this financial initiative, Malta Enterprise will be able to serve better those businesses which create employment and more commercial activity in our country.”
On Monday Foreign Affairs and Investment Promotion Minister John Dalli announced the launch of three new enterprise support schemes being offered by Malta Enterprise Corporation. The launch forms part of a suite of schemes being rolled out by Malta Enterprise in order to support enterprises in Malta.
The schemes launched Monday by Malta Enterprise will help small and medium enterprises, particularly those capable of expanding their product range or improving their products.
One scheme is directed particularly at the food processing sector and is aimed at helping small and medium enterprises adopt and implement food quality systems and undertake product development. The overall objective is to make further growth possible. This scheme will help those involved in food processing to step up quality, production processes and introduce new products. One objective is to lead companies in this sector achieve local and EU quality standards.
Another scheme will help small to medium sized manufacturers comply with health and safety regulations, EU directives concerning machinery directives, and the environment.
A third scheme is specifically designed for tenants at the Ta’ Qali Craft Village to purchase new workshops in the crafts village, which is about to be given a wholesale uplift. The scheme will help tenants obtain bank loans to cover the purchase of workshops in this way facilitating access to finance.
Staff from Malta Enterprise will be explaining these support measures and the criteria underlying the programmes personally to those eligible to participate in these schemes. Support measures will be offered on a competitive basis which means those willing to benefit will have to convince Malta Enterprise of their willingness to succeed and expand. Staff from the Malta Enterprise Client Relationship department will provide assistance on how to apply.
As part of its campaign to whip up greater business activity Malta Enterprise is also offering a wide range of support programmes. These include training, which is very popular, the facilities of a business incubation centre to help projects during their start up phase, export promotion activities and dissemination of European Union information.
Malta Enterprise will be shortly launching a series of new programmes to back up business. These are being funded by the European Union Structural Funds.
Speaking Monday, Dalli commented that enterprise in Malta will be assisted to assess the changing circumstances in the political and economical environment, regionally and globally, so that they can identify the opportunities and prepare themselves quantitatively and qualitatively to exploit these opportunities. In this way we will see our enterprise to go up the value added scale.
Malta Enterprise has more information covering its activities and planned programmes available on its website (www.maltaenterrpise.com) unless one wishes to contact the Malta Enterprise relationship management departments by e-mail on customer.relations@maltaenterprise.com



Copyright © Newsworks Ltd. Malta.
Editor: Saviour Balzan
The Malta Financial & Business Times, Newsworks Ltd, Vjal ir-Rihan, San Gwann
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