Permanent Residency Scheme Suspended


Malta Permanent Residency Scheme suspended

The Permanent Residents Scheme has been suspended for the time being in respect of EU and non-EU nationals.

The Maltese Ministry of Finance has nevertheless started a conclusive consultation process on a number of new schemes it will inaugurate to replace the suspended Permanent Residents Scheme. The number of schemes will be five and are soon to be launched.

As yet, the conditions and requirements for the mentioned schemes have not yet been published and a number of amendments to the Income Tax Act will be necessary for the scheme to function.

Among these schemes one can find the High Net Worth Individual Scheme and Global Mobile Permanent Scheme. Two of the schemes are also specific to artists, singers and professionals whose income comes from intellectual property and who are also high net worth individuals.

The Ministry of Finance proposed the below 5 schemes leading Malta to be an optimal destination for High Net Worth individuals.

Each one aims at satisfying different criteria and can be summarised as follows:

  • The High Net Worth Individual Schemeis targeted towards citizens of the EU, EEA member states and Switzerland. This is similar to the standing Permanent Residents Scheme, however with the exception of the application of higher thresholds. Residence permits granted under the scheme would be valid for an indefinite period.
  • The Schengen Area Residence Scheme.This scheme is aimed at non-EU nationals, it guarantees EU residence status and freedom of movement within all countries within the Schengen area.
  • The Global Mobile Permanent Scheme is specifically targeted to accommodate foreigners working in North Africa on three-year contracts and is a non-renewable residence permit to non-EU citizens. This enables applicants’ families to reside in Malta for the duration of that contract. This scheme does not offer the EU residence benefit.
  • The EU Professional High Net Worth Residence Scheme. The scheme will be limited and will be offered to EU nationals and is aiming at targeting artists, singers and other professionals (high net worth.) This scheme allows for a status assimilated to citizenship.
  • The Non-EU Professional High Net Worth Residence Scheme. Similar to the High Net Worth Residence Scheme, this scheme addresses high net worth artists, singers and other professionals who are non-EU nationals. The individual’s status may be brought close to citizenship and therefore will be permitted in a limited manner.

The scheme granted tax residency status in Malta to applicants but this was suspended. The five new schemes aim at addressing the requirements of those individuals who are seeking to establish their residence in Malta.

Aiming to attract high net worth individuals to Malta, the scheme had proven to be successful. Despite this and, as desired objectives were not met, the result was that the scheme in question was suspended.