Gozo cruise liner terminal would be significant development
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The Labour Leader Dr Joseph Muscat has stated that the “development of a Cruise Liner Terminal in Gozo could possibly be the most significant economic development for Gozo since the setting up of the Gozo Channel. Thanks to this terminal, Gozo will be tapping into a new market which is of utmost importance for Malta.”
Joseph Muscat, was presenting the PL Roadmap for Gozo to organisations and constituted bodies.
He explained that with the Cruise Liner Terminal project, “Government could offer incentives so that cruise liners stop twice in our country, both at Valletta as well as in Gozo.”
The Labour Leader declared that the PL is presenting various proposals “with the aim of creating jobs in Gozo for Gozitans, so that this island, as well, benefits from economic growth which reaches everyone.”
Under a new administration, “the Ministry for Gozo will have a more pro-active role including in the tourism budget aspect,” Joseph Muscat said. He added that the proposal for fast transport between Gozo and Valletta is envisaged to increase the number of tourists who visit Gozo.
He also mentioned the fact that a new Government will be giving due importance to the agro-industry sector by acknowledging it as an industry in its own right.
The PL Leader explained that a framework in conformity with EU regulations will be created in order to attract further investment to Gozo, “both investment from Gozitans in Gozo, as well as from Maltese and foreign investors who wish to invest in this island. ”
He went on to speak about the necesssity that Gozo continues to absorb EU funding so that Gozitan entities benefit from these funds.
“Gozitan Public Service employees, who wish to work in Gozo, may benefit from a new Government’s initiative to transfer back office work to Gozo in order to accommodate these individuals,” stated Joseph Muscat.
The PL Leader also added that a new Government will be assisting Gozitan businesses, through incentives to generate more work, “a new Government will be granting a Start-up Tax Credit of €50,000 or 25% of the amount invested and salaries, for the first two years of operation in Gozo. This tax credit may be used over a period of 4 years.
“As per EU regulations, businesses, who increase their workforce and hire new employees on an indefinite contract basis or for more than three years will be granted a refund of up to €5,000 on the salary of each additional employee.”
“There should be a sizeable investment in the Gozo General Hospital,” Dr Muscat said. “As well as chemotherapy service, so that individuals do not have to go through the extra hassle of travelling between the islands in those moments when they are most vulnerable.”
The Labour Party said that The Roadmap was welcomed in a positive manner by those present at the seminars who also commented about these proposals.
Joe Muscat, from the Gozo Tourism Association, “appreciated the fact that a number of the PL proposals had been suggested by the Association for a number of years including the passenger terminal and Gozitan representation in Brussels.”
Michael Grech from the Gozo Chamber of Commerce stated that “the PL roadmap included various positive initiatives with the aim of generating prosperity.” He commented that the “Gozo Chamber of Commerce will be presenting its own proposals in the near future, several of which are in agreement with the plan announced by the PL.”
With respect to the Gozo Regional Committee, Michael Grech stated that “this should be empowered further in Gozo so as to contribute with proposals for the advancement of the Gozitan Island.”
The PL said that another proposal which was welcomed very positively was the one concerning the specific attention to be given to the crafts village at Ta’ Dbiegi.