Economic laissez-faire benefitting the few and not the many, AD charges
Alternattiva Demokratika yesterday charged that the government’s “economic laissez-faire benefitting the few and not the many”.
AD noted that statistics published show that 40 per cent of people in Malta living in rented properties are living at risk of poverty.
“That such a situation has been allowed to develop is a sign of apathy on the government’s part. These statistics show that the problem is huge and deeply rooted,” said Anna Azzopardi, AD spokesperson on social policy and social dialogue.
“The inevitable conclusion is that while the economy is growing, it is developing into an economy for the few and not the many. The market is only working for the benefit of the few, while others carry the burden of a laissez-faire ‘probusiness’ attitude.
“The runaway increases in rent have been with us for quite a while, so much so that two years ago, at a Caritas meeting, Michael Farrugia, then Minister for the Family and Social Solidarity, said that he does not want any impositions or interventions on property prices. Unfortunately, since then prices have reached excessive levels for the majority of the Maltese people.
“This means that more people, living in rented places, are struggling to make ends meet after forking out a huge chunk of their income for rent.
“Propaganda paints a picture of a healthy economy, however the plight of the poor is not being heard enough, on the contrary it is often being ignored. When pointing out that there is suffering out there, the standard answer is that the economy is doing well and that things are being blown out of proportion. We have reached a stage where the government needs to admit and accept that there is an urgent need to intervene in the property market - in particular in the rent market. The government can do this by addressing more aggressively the social housing situation, with social housing provided to those who really need it.
“There are other things which can be done and we expect, the long promised White Paper on the rental market to offer solutions to improve the quality of life the most vulnerable people in our society.”