United Nations Pension Programme (UNPP)

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The regulations outlined in the United Nations Pensions Programme Rules, 2015 (UNPP) offer the possibility of granting a "special tax status" to qualifying individuals.

CSB Group is a licensed Agent by Community Malta and the Residency Malta Agency, with License number AKM-CSBI-21

UNPP Elibility Requirements

To be eligible, an individual must not be a permanent or long-term resident of Malta and must be receiving at least 40% of a UN pension while residing in Malta. Additionally, they may hold a non-executive position on a Maltese company's board or engage in activities associated with public institutions, trusts, foundations, or similar philanthropic, educational, or research-oriented organizations in Malta.

Applicants must not be benefiting from other tax programmes

Applicants interested in applying for the UNPP must not be benefiting from other tax programmes such as Residents Scheme Regulations, High Net Worth Individuals Rules, Malta Retirement Programme Rules, Qualifying Employment in Innovation and Creativity Rules, the Highly Qualified Persons Rules, the Global Residence Programme Rules or the Residence Programme Rules.

Applicants must have a stable income and are economically self sufficient

On top of this, applicants must also receive a stable income to maintain both him/herself and any dependents without having to make use of the social assistance system in Malta.

A valid travel document and health insurance

He/she must also possess a valid travel document, a sickness insurance that addresses all risks Maltese nationals are normally covered by, can adequately communicate in one of the official languages of Malta, and is a fit and proper person.

Purchase or rent a qualifying property in Malta

Aside from the above, applicants will need to hold qualifying property in Malta with the following characteristics:

  • Purchase of property for a minimum of €220,000 if located in Gozo or South of Malta or €275,000 if located in other parts of Malta.
  • Rental of property for a minimum of €8,750 if located in Gozo or South of Malta or €9,600 if located in other parts of Malta for no less than 12 months, and in which no one else other than the applicants and their dependents reside

The above property requirement plus a non-refundable Application fee of €3500 if the property is in Gozo or the South of Malta; or €4000 if situated in other parts of Malta, is incurred when applying for the United Nations Pension Programme (UNPP).

Who qualifies for the United Nations Pension Programme (UNPP)?

The United Nations Pension Programme (UNPP) is a very attractive programme for those wanting to get a special tax status and a base within the European Union. Aside from the main applicant, qualifying dependants are the following:

  • The spouse of the main applicant, or the person with whom the beneficiary is in a stable and durable relationship;
  • Children including adopted minor children, and children in the care and custody of the main applicant who are under 18 years old;
  • Children including adopted who are not minors but are unable to maintain themselves due to circumstances of illness or disability of a serious gravity;
  • Children between 18 and 25 years old, including adopted children, provided that such children are not economically active;
  • Children including adopted who are not minors but who because of circumstances of illness or disability of a serious gravity, are unable to maintain themselves;
  • Dependent brothers, sisters and direct relatives in the ascending line of the main applicant or his/her spouse or the person with whom the beneficiary is in a stable and durable relationship;
  • Household staff who have been with the family for at least 2 years from the date of the application.

United Nations Pension Programme: The Benefits

Malta is one of the countries that do not tax United Nations pensions. Applicants taking up residence in Malta through the United Nations Pension Programme will benefit from a special and favourable tax status and treatment as follows:

  • Exempt from income tax on UN pension income or Widow’s/Widower’s Benefit received in Malta. Malta is one of the UN pension tax free countries;
  • Subject to a tax rate of 15% on any income, excluding UN pension income or Widow’s/Widower’s Benefit, earned outside Malta but received in Malta;
  • Subject to a tax rate of 35% on any other income which is not taxable under these rules. This may include, among other things, bank interest from a Maltese bank, rental income from property in Malta, or dividends from a company registered in Malta.

Furthermore, applicants will be able to enjoy a number of other benefits including:

  • A lively lifestyle on a sunny island in the Mediterranean with lovely weather and crystal-clear sea, regularly voted the second-best diving destination in the world, also home to three of the World UNESCO Heritage Sites;
  • Excellent political stability and is a member state of the Schengen Area, offering the chance to move freely within all 26 member countries;
  • Outstanding public and private healthcare are available, granting Malta the fifth position amongst 100+ countries as ranked by the World Health Organisation (WHO);
  • A growing economy and investment opportunities especially in the real estate market;
  • English as an official language and an English speaking population;
  • Access to work or study in Malta;

Some fine line: Recipients of the special tax status provided under the UNPP are required to pay a minimum tax on income earned outside Malta but received within the country, excluding UN pension income or Widow’s/Widower’s Benefit. This minimum tax amounts to €10,000 for the beneficiary alone and an additional €5,000 if both spouses are receiving a UN pension.

How can we help you?

CSB Group, as an Authorised Registered Mandatory, will assist you all the way for you to be granted with a special tax status and your international tax planning needs.

CSB Group will give you preliminary advice and a preliminary Formal Tax Opinion if needed. We will perform Tier 1 Due Diligence checks as part of our onboarding process and get everything ready for the preparation of your application.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Is UN pension taxable in the US?

United Nations (UN) pensions may be taxable in the United States, depending on various factors including the recipient's citizenship, residency status, and the nature of the pension income.

Is UN pension taxable in Canada?

In Canada, the taxation of United Nations (UN) pensions depends on various factors, including the type of pension, the recipient's residency status, and any applicable tax treaties between Canada and the country where the UN pension originated.

Are UN pensions taxable in the UK?

If you are a resident of the United Kingdom for tax purposes, you are generally subject to UK income tax on your worldwide income. This includes income from UN pensions.

How does the UN calculate pension?

Here's a general overview of how the UN calculates pension benefits for its employees:

  1. Accumulation of Service: Pension benefits are typically based on the number of years of service with the United Nations. Each year of service contributes to the accumulation of pension benefits.
  2. Final Average Salary: The pension amount is often calculated based on the employee's final average salary or the average of the highest consecutive years of salary, depending on the specific rules of the pension scheme.
  3. Accrual Rate: The pension formula typically involves a certain percentage of the employee's final average salary multiplied by the number of years of service.
  4. Pensionable Earnings: In many cases, only base salary or certain types of compensation are considered pensionable earnings for the purpose of calculating pension benefits.
  5. Vesting Period: Employees usually need to meet certain criteria, such as completing a minimum number of years of service, to become eligible for pension benefits. This is known as the vesting period.

It's important to note that the specific details of the pension calculation may vary depending on the employee's contract, employment category, and the rules of the pension scheme in place at the time of their employment. Additionally, the UN may periodically review and adjust its pension schemes to ensure their sustainability and adequacy.

Need our assistance with the United Nations Pension Programme?

Key Contacts

Malcolm Ferrante

Senior Manager - Immigration and Relocation

Michela Pace

Investment Migration Officer



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