Editorial | The challenges we face

Our dependence on tourism is high and reports and comparisons to other countries will not alleviate the crisis we are facing


Air Malta is operating with only three planes, down from 10 planes, and is running at 63% capacity for the month of July.  A far cry from the operation of 10 planes and 95% capacity in the year 2019.

The national airline is also facing a 24-month recovery period to match 2019 numbers.

The tragedy of the COVID pandemic has left airlines grounded, staff unemployed and a meltdown in many tourism sectors.

And we are not alone in this.

It is clear that a fear of a resurgent pandemic is keeping many away and more significantly many people are hesitant to travel, aware of the high costs involved in a time of financial stress.

Our dependence on tourism is high and reports and comparisons to other countries will not alleviate the crisis we are facing.

Many hotels and other businesses are laying off people, and the long-term ramifications of these redundancies will be felt in October.

At the same time, purchasing power is bound to drop.

In light of this, the government needs to reduce – where possible – tax burden, including VAT.

There need to be more schemes to help ailing industries and businesses stay afloat and this can only be done by extending the Malta Enterprise schemes.

It is also high time to reassess those aspects of the economy which are under the greatest stress and strain and to direct aid in their direction.

Delia must go now

The political crisis in the Nationalist Party has diminished the value of democracy. There can be no functioning of a democracy without a constructive opposition.  One that is led by unity and purpose.

That is not possible now with the impossible leadership of Adrian Delia in the face of open rebellion from his parliamentary group and now the party executive.

Delia is blind to the repercussions of his actions, and he is hanging on to his position knowing all too well that it is untenable and simply leading to the auto-destruction of the PN.

Delia’s position has been fortified by the ‘curious’ decision by President George Vella, whose interpretation of the Constitution argued that Delia could retain his role as leader of opposition in spite of having lost his parliamentary support.

Delia’s self-centred approach to the problem has landed this country in a scenario that allows the government to take policy decisions without question.

This country needs to calibrate its parliamentary representation and bring some normality and seriousness back into the political discourse that determines the direction we take and the priorities we face.

This country needs normality not an orgy of self-centred politics dominated by political leaders who cannot place country before their singular and parochial interests.

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