AGEM on Budget 2018/2019
The Association for Gozitan Employees working in Malta (AGEM) notifies with great satisfaction that in the Budget government pledged to deliver two new fiscal incentives, which will help to alleviate some of the hardships faced by Gozitan employees working in Malta.
After years of inertia, government concretely recognised and acknowledged the financial hardships faced by Gozitan employees working in Malta.
The newly presented incentives include: 1. A €1.50 daily allowance to public sector Gozitan employees working in Malta who make use of collective modes of transport to get to their place of work, which in concrete terms translates into a maximum entitlement of €370 annually per eligible commuter; and 2. Gozitan employees working in the private sector will for the first time see their ferry expenses fully covered at a passenger’s rate (excluding vehicle costs). In real terms, the measure translates into a maximum entitlement of €288 annually per eligible commuter. These measures together with the Gozo Workers Subsidy Scheme, as also clearly indicated by AGEM in its pre-Budget consultation document, will not only alleviate Gozitan workers financially but will also help to reduce the ever-increasing amount of cars on Maltese roads.
AGEM, therefore, would like to offer its sincere gratitude to the Minister for Gozo, Dr Justyne Caruana, who from day one pledged her support to the association and what it stands for and to the Minister for Finance, Prof. Edward Scicluna, for instantly making his intentions clear that the 2019 Budget will cater for the needs of Gozitan employees working in Malta.
AGEM understands that there is no magic wand to solve all problems at once. The association notifies that financial burdens are not the only negative factors faced by Gozitan workers and hence there still is a lot that needs to be done to fully address Gozitan workers’ daily hardships and problems.
One of the latter is surely the lack of parking space in the Mgarr Port, which government earmarked to solve by the introduction of a Park and Ride system, which AGEM actively supports. The association, therefore, believes that the time is ripe for this initiative to materialise in the shortest time possible to alleviate the presence of vehicles from the port, which is on a continuous rise and to facilitate parking headaches for daily Gozitan commuters.
Finally, AGEM (after a mere one year from its existence) believes that this Budget confirms that, through constructive dialogue and collective efforts, it will lead to fruitful, social just and sustainable achievements for Gozitan employees.