Update by Ministry of Health
After three consecutive days with no reports of new coronavirus cases in Malta, the Health Department said that three cases were identified during the past 24 hours. With the same number recovering, the number of active cases remains stable at 32.
Swabbing remains at a health rate, with more than 1,000 persons visiting one of the different centres or else tested randomly at hospital or in one of the country’s nursing homes.
In two of the new cases, the affected patients had demonstrated no symptoms.
#MALTA-24: LOCAL NEWS
The government’s open-air cinema has come under fire for the second time since its launch – this time for flouting social distancing rules.
Cinema City kicks off on Thursday evening with a showing of the blockbuster Jurassic World, but pictures of the set up shows seats arranged close to each other.
According to the “Obligatory Conditions and Guidelines for Drive-in cinemas, Outdoor Cinemas, Outdoor Theatres”, published by the Health Ministry, audiences at open-air cinemas must sit 2 metres apart.
Rows of deck chairs and plastic chairs have been laid out at Ġnien Laparelli, more commonly known as the Valletta Ditch, in preparation for the event.
The health authorities’ guidelines state that in the case of movable seating that can be spaced out as necessary, which is what the Agency is using, this should be laid out in such a way as “to respect the 2m distancing requirement”.
The obligatory guidelines issues by the Health Ministry.
Malta with third highest share of non-nationals in the EU
On 1 January 2019, 21.8 million citizens of a non-member country lived in one of the 27 EU Member States, representing almost 5% of the EU population.
According to data published by Eurostat, Malta registered the third highest rate, with 17% of the population consisting of non-nationals, either from EU Member States or Third Country Nationals.
In addition, there were 13.3 million people living in one of the EU Member States on 1 January 2019 with the citizenship of another EU Member State, representing almost 3% of the EU population.
The Malta Business Weekly quotes a legal advisor with the US embassy, Richard Daynes, who warned that Malta could end up on the gray-list of the Financial Action Task Force unless Moneyval recommendations were implemented fast.
L-Orizzont says that newly appointed Police Commissioner Angelo Gafà led over 1,100 investigations when he headed the Economic Crimes Unit. The paper says he won nine in ten of all cases that were prosecuted.
In-Nazzjon quotes Opposition Leader Adrian Delia who criticised Prime Minister Robert Abela for delaying the expulsion of former minister Konrad Mizzi. Delia said that the prolonged action cost Malta millions of euros.
The Times follows the testimony of Inspector Kurt Zahra before the Caruana Galizia inquiry where he said that Yorgen Fenech had photos of the terms and conditions of the pardon granted to middleman Melvin Theuma.
The Independent quotes Inspector Kurt Zahra who told the Caruana Galizia inquiry that businessman Yorgen Fenech knew from as far back December 2016 that an early general election was going to be called the following year.
The Malta Busines Weekly reports on the public inquiry into Daphne Caruana Galizia’s assassination on Wednesday which revealed that playright Mario Philip Azzopardi has submitted a play entitled ‘Who killed Daphne?’ a year before the murder.
L-Orizzont quotes Tourism Minister Julia Farrugia Portelli who told parliament that the government is aiming for a target of 700,000 tourists by the end of the year. The minister said €5 million were invested in reskilling workers in the tourism sector.
In-Nazzjon reports that the PN General Council will convene today to discuss proposed amendments to the party’s statute. The paper says the changes will renew the political party to reflect contemporary society.
The Times quotes a review by the Auditors Office which questioned the ability of the Occupational Health and Safety Authority to look out for and report safety hazards in minor construction projects.
The Independent says that the Gozo Animal Welfare Unit is waiting for approval by the Prime Minister’s Office to extend hours from mornings, five days a week, to 24/7. The Gozo SPCA is urging authorities to increase emergency hours.
L-Orizzont says that the Malta Gaming Authority refused or withdrew 44 licenses last year from 89 applications. The authority’s annual report confirms that 53 new licenses were granted during 2019.
The Times of Malta joins the debate of the role of statues in the context of our country’s history. The Editor argues that getting at statues to punish or delete history is dangerous and self-defeating. At the same time, further efforts to understand history was important, and is actually a sign of maturity, for a country as much for any individual.
The debate in Malta should focus on making the disputed statues symbols of a renewed sense of historical identity that is neither colonially servile, nor romanticised, nor exclusionary, but empowering of who we aspire to be today.
The Independent welcomes the expulsion of Konrad Mizzi from Labour arguing that the move was long overdue. Mizzi was among a small group of persons who, time and time again shamed Malta’s name due to his involvement in several scandals.
The Editor notes how Abela boasted on Tuesday that the PL had set a “new standard” in politics. If he truly means that, the Editor continues, he should immediately ask Muscat to step down too. The PM should know that the concept of political responsibility applies to everyone, especially to those at the very top.
Business Today argues that Malta’s international reputation has been sullied for too long and the risks of this having a significant impact are real. The Council of Europe’s Moneyval task force is expected to deliver its verdict after the summer on Malta’s efforts to combat financial crime. It was therefore imperative that Abela’s government persists in its drive to ensure the rule of law prevails and the highest ethical standards are demanded of those in power.
L-Orizzont also discusses Labour’s decision to vote out Konrad Mizzi, noting how the almost unanimous vote meant that even in such circumstances the party was united. This was crucial for the party in government to continue delivering, for the benefit of the Maltese population. The Editor describes this vote as democracy in practice.
In-Nazzjon’s Editorial can be described as a memo to new Police Commissioner Angelo Gafa’, with the PN paper acknowledging that the new appointee’s first words “instilled a sense of hope”, particularly his commitment to fight corruption and to investigate anyone involved in such allegations without fear or favour. The Editor describes Gafa as an energetic man ready to take up this challenge, but ends with a warning: there should be no political interference in his work.
EasyJet to resume flights to Paris, Milan and Barcelona in July
Airline easyJet will resume flights on international routes to Paris, Milan and Barcelona from Britain on July 1 as it aims to restore some capacity for the summer after flights were grounded by the spread of COVID-19.
The airline started operating a small number of mainly domestic flights last week, and is aiming to resume flying on three-quarters of its routes by August, at lower frequencies than usual and with extra safety measures in place.
On Wednesday, easyJet reported a bigger first-half loss as it took a hit from failed fuel hedging and sought to raise as much as 450 million pounds ($559.31 million) to glide through the global demand slump for air travel.
California Disneyland reopening delayed beyond July 17
Walt Disney Co’s reopening of theme parks and resort hotels in California will be delayed until Disneyland receives approval from the state, the company said on Wednesday.
Disney had originally planned to reopen the Disneyland Park and Disney California Adventure Park on July 17.
“California has now indicated that it will not issue theme park reopening guidelines until sometime after July 4,” Disney said in a statement, of one reason for the delay.
The company had also received pushback from unions representing 17,000 workers at its Disneyland Resort in Southern California, who said they were not convinced the theme park would be safe enough to reopen by the company’s target date.
EU Corner – by Comuniq.EU
EU Commission tackles companies investing in Europe with state support
State-backed foreign firms will have a harder time buying European Union companies under a proposal by the the European Commission.
New measures were needed because the existing foreign direct investment screening rules and trade defence measures were not enough to ward off a potential post- coronavirus buying spree of cheap assets, the European Commission said on Wednesday (June 17).
The EU fears foreign subsidies may be used to grow market share or underbid European rivals to gain access to strategically important markets or critical infrastructure.
“The role of the Commission is to uphold the single market and to take action when third countries subsidise their companies and distort the level playing field within our union,” the European Commission’s antitrust chief Margrethe Vestager told a news conference.
Corporate Dispatch Pro Recommends Reinventing business on purpose
As demarcation lines between industries and offerings become ever more blurred, purpose is fast emerging as a key strategic driver for sustainable growth. Traditionally, high-growth strategies involve the creation of new markets, extending the range of products and service, or disrupting the industry. All of these approaches focus on the forces external to the company.
A purpose-driven strategy, by contrast, concentrates on the internal forces of the organisation, although this is by no means an inward-looking approach. Simply put, purpose establishes the raison d’etre of a company.
This daily update bulletin is being compiled for the Chamber of Advocates by CI Consulta from Corporate ID Group. CI Consulta delivers policy research and analysis, evaluations and impact assessments up to policy implementation and integration.