The Economic Update May/June 2014

Page 1

May 2014

COVER STORY

Trading Large HurdLes

Sascha Zyfman, Manager at the FX Options Desk with FXDD, on managing funds for private and individual worldwide customers p.04

InsIde ›› Malta-Tunisia-Libya B2B networking Forum 2014: Linking Continents and Cultures

A special feature on this year’s largest B2B Networking Event held at SmartCity, gathering over 50 Tunsian and Libyan companies, p.06

›› MsV Life Top entrepreneur of the Year 2014: Creating a Culture of excellence

We bring the curtain down on the most successful MSV Life Top Entrepreneur of the Year Awards held at InterContinental Malta, p.16

›› Beyond Football: Responsible engagement

As the countdown to the World Cup 2014 begins, we treat our readers with an exclusive interview with the World’s greatest footballer: Pele’

›› eU Funding: european Funding Opportunities for Collaborations with north Africa

p.26

Anamaria Magri Pantea studies why Malta provides acts as a bridge and facilitator for collaborations and exchanges between EU and North Africa

p.58



Future Home of

OPENING JULY R E P U B L I C S T R E E T, VA L L E T TA

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May 2014

COVER STORY

Trading Large HurdLes

Sascha Zyfman, Manager at the FX Options Desk with FXDD, on managing funds for private and individual worldwide customers p.04

CONTENTS Feature stories 04 cover story: trading large

InsIde ›› Malta-Tunisia-Libya B2B networking Forum 2014: Linking Continents and Cultures

A special feature on this year’s largest B2B Networking Event held at SmartCity, gathering over 50 Tunsian and Libyan companies, p.06

›› MsV Life Top entrepreneur of the Year 2014: Creating a Culture of excellence

We bring the curtain down on the most successful MSV Life Top Entrepreneur of the Year Awards held at InterContinental Malta, p.16

›› Beyond Football: Responsible engagement

As the countdown to the World Cup 2014 begins, we treat our readers with an exclusive interview with the World’s greatest footballer: Pele’ p.26

›› eU Funding: european Funding Opportunities for Collaborations with north Africa

Anamaria Magri Pantea studies why Malta provides acts as a bridge and facilitator for collaborations and exchanges between EU and North Africa p.58

Publisher John Formosa editor Martin Vella Journalist George Carol sales & Publication Manager Margaret Brincat graPhic designer Jessica Camilleri cover PhotograPhy FXDD Printing PRINT IT Quote of the month: “To be a consistent winner means preparing not just one day, one month or even one year - but for a lifetime.” - Bill Rodgers

04

hurdles Sascha Zyfman, Manager at the FX Options Desk with FXDD, on managing funds for private and individual worldwide customers 06 Malta-tunisia-libya b2b

networking ForuM 2014: linking continents and cultures A special 10 page feature on this year’s largest B2B Networking Event held at SmartCity, gathering over 50 Tunsian and Libyan companies, with contributions by Dr Edward Zammit Lewis, Dr Leo Brincat and a photo gallery 16 Msv liFe toP entrePreneur oF the

06

year 2014: creating a culture oF excellence We bring the curtain down on the most successful top entrepreneur of the Year awards held at InterContinental Malta with a 12-page special featuring a photo album and interview with the winners 26 beyond Football: resPonsible

engageMent As the countdown to the World Cup 2014 begins, we treat our readers with an exclusive interview with the World’s greatest footballer: Pele’

For magazine and website advertising enquiries please contact:

16

margaret@networkpublications.com.mt or call on (+356) 9940 6743 For editorial enquiries please contact: martin.vella@networkpublications.com.mt The Economic Update is published by: Network Publications Ltd., Angelica Court, Giuseppi Cali Str., Ta’ Xbiex, XBX1425, Malta Tel: +356 2131 6326/7/8 Fax: +356 2132 3432

Contributors: John Bellamy, Raymond Bonnici, Carlo Callus, Andrew J. Cauchi, Moustapha Kessous, Vince Magri, Anamaria Magri Pantea & Gabriella Zammit

38 entroPay business: PayMents

tailor-Made For sMall coMPanies The new design of suite of payments solutions by Ixaris providing one-stop shop for payments needs of small companies 40 Malta tax FirM oF the year 2014: We follow the 10TH European Tax Awards held in London in May

Special Thanks: BPI, Canon Group, Lemonde, Ogilvy PR, Smartlight Systems Ltd, TIP, U-group & John Wilson

44 rMb business develoPMent: hsbc uniquely Positioned to oFFer trading with china The Economic Update talks with Rongrong Huo - HSBC Head of RMB Business Development, Europe

Please feel free to email us with your viewpoint, whether you agree or disagree with the standpoint of the personalities we interview or the topics we focus on. Your opinion, contribution, concern and feedback on our articles and interviews are welcome. Please include full name, contact details

48 banking: FiMbank to organise international coMPliance conFerence and host iFg A broad overview on the Compliance Conference Fimbank and the International Factors Group Annual Meeting

www.maltaeconomicupdate.com

52 international relations: the swiss

contribution We take a look at the Memorandum of Understanding between Switzerland and the EU

26


44

Editor’s NotE Toto, I’ve got a feeling we’re not in Kansas anymore.” Dorothy We are definitely not in Kansas! We are in the middle of the Mediterranean ocean in a dry and rocky Island that has just voted to elect their next Euro MEPs. After months of electoral campaigning, we still find ourselves in the same place where we started. The outcome of this MEP election, unlike any other, makes me wonder whether we are convinced that we are here for a reason and determined to turn that unwanted change into an adventure! In the midst of these events I am still so thankful for believing in and belonging to Europe, for new friends and that we are immersed in a civilising experience! During this transition my mind frequently questions how and where I fit in this new world (dis)order.

54

Last week I discovered a publication that I had never seen before. It was simply awesome! In seconds I was hooked by the great name, the titles of the articles, the artwork, and the stories. Within minutes there were little monsters on my shoulder whispering in my ear to compare all that I was reading to my own publications. Then the monsters got a little louder reminding me of all that I am not. I literally had to stop reading. Before long I was reminded of the things I tell others, as I encourage them to “throw themselves”- We are all here for a reason and so we are each called to be the best we can be. In my work, it is my privilege to listen to the stories of the people I meet so I can better understand them. And it is my job to share my stories with my voice. As the monsters began to diminish in size, I remembered that so much of what I am tempted to feel right now is normal when someone is in the midst of change. Fear and doubt – yes that’s normal! Emotional roller coaster – yes that’s normal too! Having fun one day and questioning where you fit the next – still normal! I am in a new place, filled with wonderful opportunities and supported by a fantastic person. I know that the human in me wants to grab the reigns and be a part of something as quickly as possible. I know that I need to stay in explorer mode for a little longer. I don’t know yet – what I will learn here. … But I choose to learn. I am here for a reason! What goes down, will go up again! I write this today thinking of persons that are saying farewell to a stagnant existence and getting ready to embark on a new life of living, of others that are getting ready to say goodbye to what they have known and beginning to navigate a new reality and of so many who are in the midst of other life changes. It is normal to feel disorientated in the midst of change. It is normal to have monsters whispering doubts and fears into your ears. It is normal for your emotions to play tricks on you. Part of turning this change into an adventure is to view the confusion and the lows as a roller-coaster ride… What goes down, will go up again! Lift your arms. Close your eyes. Feel the wind on your face. Breath deeply. Embrace the adventure! Embrace this edition and enjoy navigating! Martin Vella

58

54 CorporatE FuNdiNg: thE LoaN FuNd addEd to MaLta’s List oF possibLE

FuNd sEt-ups Spotlight on a new set of Investment Services Rules issued by MFSA to address the areas of risk

56 projECt MaNagEMENt: puttiNg ChaNgE iNto praCtiCE

An article by Vince Magri on the complex activity of project management 58 Eu FuNdiNg: EuropEaN FuNdiNg opportuNitiEs For CoLLaboratioNs

with North aFriCa Anamaria Magri Pantea studies why Malta provides acts as a bridge and facilitator for collaborations and exchanges between EU and North Africa

All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part is strictly prohibited without written permission. Opinions expressed in The Economic Update are not necessarily those of the editor or publishers. All reasonable care is taken to ensure truth and accuracy, but the editor and publishers cannot be held responsible for errors or omissions in articles, advertising, photographs or illustrations. The Economic Update is printed by Print IT and distributed free with The Business Weekly.


COVER STORY INTERVIEW

Trading Large HurdLes By Martin Vella

In this month’s cover story interview, I am interviewing Sascha Szyfman, the Manager for the FX Options Desk. Frankly, I did not know what a systematic CTA market manager for an FX trader role on the Options desk is, so I was not really sure what to expect from this interview! It is only when i sat down to listen to Sascha explain how he manages funds on behalf of private and institutional clients worldwide that I began to understand how he applies a combined fundamental and technical discretionary trading model to his managed portfolios. 04 |

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COVER STORY INTERVIEW

TEU: How did you come into the FX business, was it a chance encounter, or did you specifically want to get into it? SS: I studied the foreign exchange markets during college. Upon graduation, I knew I wanted to pursue a career in one of the major financial branches. The Forex market was always of particular interest to me due to its size, global influence, and volatile nature. I sought a career with FXDD, knowing they were a leader in the category, and was hired due to being a bilingual speaker fluent in German and my experience in FX. TEU: Can you take our readers through what FX Options offerings FXDD are currently providing their customers? SS: FXDD Global, a leader in online Forex trading and education, offers foreign exchange options trading through its FXDD Options Trader platform. FXDD Options Trader features spot FX and options trading on one platform, matched with the powerful StrategyOptimizer™ modeling tool, which allows traders to automatically find the highest profit/lowest risk combination of options for any given strategy. The multi-functional platform also includes a completely customizable interface, direct trading from charts for both spot FX and options, comprehensive reporting, order and risk management, and extensive portfolio analytics – all while providing streaming options pricing from multiple leading global institutions. FXDD Options Trader offers options on gold, silver, and 35 currency pairs, including: AUD/CAD, AUD/CHF, AUD/JPY, AUD/ NZD, AUD/USD, CAD/CHF, CAD/JPY, CHF/JPY, EUR/AUD, EUR/CAD, EUR/ CHF, EUR/GBP, EUR/JPY, EUR/USD, GBP/ CHF, GBP/JPY, GBP/USD, NZD/USD, USD/CAD, USD/CHF, USD/HKD, USD/ JPY, USD/SGD, and USD/INR. TEU: Which companies/customers are you targeting with your services? SS: FXDD Global has a substantial institutional business made stronger by our FX options white label. Through our offering, companies can offer a custom branded FXDD Options Trader platform to their clients for a lucrative revenue stream. Our platform is fitted especially for financial companies interested in on-boarding a

new audience of sophisticated and affluent traders. The company also appeals to large pension funds, hedge funds, and import/ export businesses in need of hedging their foreign exchange risk.

TEU: FXDD has remained an industry leader with strong financial results, and is known for having the highest levels of quality and integrity. What makes FXDD so special?

FXDD Global has identified two main targets for self-directed trading accounts. Our first target includes traders involved with options who want to upgrade to FX options trading. There are clear advantages to trading FX options, including the 24-hour trading environment and lower transaction costs. Our second target is traders currently investing in spot FX who want better refined risk management capabilities. For this reason, we offer a library of educational materials for traders of all experience levels.

SS: FXDD is a company that prides itself on being a transparent leader with a client-centric approach. We set ourselves apart through our customer service and educational resources. The success of the trader has always been our ultimate goal, which is why we are always pushing ourselves to offer more resources and tools to help traders become informed about all aspects of global market activities. We believe our sensitive approach to client relationships is a major reason why many existing traders switch to FXDD Global.

Through our offering, companies can offer a custom branded FXDD Options Trader platform to their clients for a lucrative revenue stream

TEU: Is innovation taking place on the product side or in other areas? SS: Absolutely. Innovation is at the core of FXDD’s operations, beginning with the development of the first in-house Metatrader 4 bridge. Our innovation is why we secured a top position within the FX industry. As our FX vanilla options product matures, we anticipate new technology to provide our clients with a cutting edge experience. Such innovations include new automated strategies, more tradable products, including exotic options, and the ability to choose strike and expiry dates. In the short-term, we are continually expanding our customer support services and educational resources. TEU: Why, in your opinion, is FXDD Global the place to trade FX Options? SS: FXDD Global is currently one of the few premiere providers of vanilla FX options. What sets us apart from other companies is our deep-seated experience in the FX industry. The FXDD brand has over ten years’ experience in Forex. We believe our experience brings added value to our consumers, as we have the knowledge and initiative to handle all consumer requests and new business ventures.

TEU: What is your outlook for growth for FXDD and where will it come from? SS: FXDD Global anticipates rapid growth in new and developed markets in the coming years. The company has devised a long-term plan to focus on institutional businesses in the U.S. and reinvest into international institutional and self-directed accounts. It’s our belief that FXDD will be among the top 5 leading FX brokers in the coming years. TEU

LICENSING STATEMENT: FXDD Malta Limited is licensed to provide investment services by the Malta Financial Services Authority. Registered Office; K2, First Floor, Forni Complex, Valletta Waterfront, Floriana FRN 1913, Malta. HIGH RISK WARNING: Foreign exchange trading carries a high level of risk that may not be suitable for all investors. All rights reserved | Copyrighted

Editor’s Note Sascha Szyfman, CTA is the Manager for the FX Options Desk and works on the Risk Management desk at FXDD. He joined the FXDD team in 2011. He began his career as a Sales & Support Representative for German speaking clients, from which he moved to manage the entire German Desk. In late 2012, he spearheaded the release of a new retail FX Options product. He later earned his Commodity Trading Advisor designation. He earned a B.A. in Economics and a B.A. in International Studies from The College of New Jersey, receiving accreditation for his work on central banking operations and on its effect on the volatility of benchmark interest rates within the domestic economy. He focuses primarily on key option barrier levels and implied volatilities.

May 2014 | THE ECONOMIC UPDATE

| 05


Malta-tunisia-libya b2b networking ForuM 2014

Malta-tunisia-libya b2b networking ForuM - part 1 The Economic Update co-organised the Malta-Tunisia-Libya B2B Networking Forum together with the Tunisian Embassy, the Libyan Embassy and the Libya Business Council on 8th May 2014. With over 25 exhibitors and sponsors, the Forum was attended by 45 Tunisian and a dozen Libyan business companies, the event attracted over 500 delegates, overseas businessmen and corporate level executives, including the participation of over five embassies. The B2B one day business event consisted of conference, forum with open-floor debate, networking activities, exhibition display stands, banquet dinner and entertainment. This event is dedicated to mainly promote private enterprise and bring together all stakeholders of the Maltese business community that trade with Tunisia and Libya, wherein the Tunisian and Libyan Embassies are joining forces to consolidate individual initiatives together with The Economic Update’s business partners and interested entrepreneurs wanting to do business with Tunisia-Libya countries under one roof.

One of the three government speakers at the Malta-TunisiaLibya B2B Networking Forum 2014 held at Smart City, which launched the Malta-Tunisia-Libya Business Council, stated that, “organised together with the European Commission, (the conference would) discuss the role of energy developments in the Mediterranean region and their role in the wider geopolitical scenario. More specifically the conference is intended to focus on gas as a strategic energy product for the region and beyond.” This event included very interactive workshop aimed at transmitting basic business concepts and principles to attending managers in a practical, hands-on, result-oriented fashion to promote privet enterprise and foster local and international business relationships. The Tunisian business entrepreneurs accompanied by a government and diplomatic delegation were brought over courtesy of HE the Tunisian Ambassador Souad Gueblaoui and the Libyan Embassy in Malta.

H.E. The Ambassador of the Republic of Tunisia, Souad Geblaoui delivering her speech

Piers Allen together with Dr. Luciano Bussutill, Chairman KSM

Bird’s eye view of the event at SmartCity Malta

Margaret Brincat, Viktoriya Kyurcheva & EVSG Colleague

06 |

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MAlTA-TUNIsIA-lIbyA b2b NETwOrkINg FOrUM 2014

Section of the distinguished deligates packing the Malta-Tunisia-Libya B2B conference tent

Dr. Dahmani, Libyan Chargé D’Affaires Hussein Benown & Souad Geblaoui

Deligates enjoying coffee break

H.E. Souad Geblaoui together with Martin Vella, event organiser

H.E. Souad Geblaoui

Dr Patirica Vella networking

Workshop session with Anamaria Magri Pantea & Werner Jung

Deligates posing for a souvinier photo

Dr Michael Frendo addressing deligates

May 2014 | THE ECONOMIC UPDATE

| 07


Malta-tunisia-libya b2b networking ForuM 2014

SPEECH BY THE MINISTER OF TOURISM DR. EDWARD ZAMMIT LEWIS DURING THE MALTA-TUNISIA-LIBYA B2B NETWORKING FORUM 2014 accreditation from a number of international-awarding bodies, including the City and Guilds, the European Foundation for the Accreditation of Hotel Schools and the European Association of Erasmus Coordinators. The other main public entities that award qualifications are the University of Malta and Malta College of Arts Science and Technology.

It is a pleasure to be here. And I extend greetings to all visitors to Malta for this forum. You are very welcome. There is no doubt that the Mediterranean is one of the most important tourism regions in the world. It accounts for more than a third of total tourism revenues. For decades, Mediterranean destinations have served as the ideal traditional sun and sea product, especially for visitors from the north of Europe. The close proximity of our three countries has given us a shared interest in welcoming visitors to the Mediterranean. The UNWTO reports that between 1990 and 2010, the southern and eastern Mediterranean region, comprising Algeria, Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, Palestine, Syria, Turkey, and Libya and Tunisia, collectively recorded the highest growth rates of inbound world tourism - from 17 million visitors in 1990 to 72 million in 2011. The Arab Spring slowed down this trend. The economic crisis in European source markets and the on-going upheaval in North African and the Middle Eastern countries have, no doubt, had a negative impact on tourism. Nonetheless, tourism remains important in these countries, with a high contribution to the GDP averaging 12% in 2012. In Malta, the tourism contribution to our GDP stands at a very high 29% and is registering progressive growth.Last year, tourist arrivals to Malta reached an all time record of 1.58 million, with tourist expenditure rising to 1.44 billion Euros. The importance of the tourism industry to our islands cannot be underestimated. But what of the future? The UNWTO 6th International Conference, which was held in Djerba in April 2012 to discuss the future of tourism in the Mediterranean, identified two major challenges. The other challenge identified in the Djerba conference was how to increase our share of evolving markets and reinforce the Mediterranean tourism appeal. Malta has been working hard on this, and we have strived to increase our market share through diversification. We have successfully tapped new geographic source markets and new market segments. Our traditional market, the UK, remains veryimportant but we have greatly reduced our dependence on it.

My country has established a name in English language teaching to the extent that we now have 42 English language schools, catering for all levels of English and students of all ages. The liberalisation of air transport presented us with an opportunity to boost tourism, but this required a careful process to minimise negative effects on our national airline. Air Malta has been restructured to improve its commercial viability and has made good progress. It flies to 33 destinations, including daily flights to Tripoli and twice weekly flights to Benghazi. The aviation sector, which is intrinsically linked to tourism and international business, also falls within my portfolio. Aviation offers a number of opportunities and also plays an important role in economic growth. This sector offers opportunities for direct investment, business development, specialisation of services and so on.It can also create a very positive multiplier effect. This is also an area for cooperation between our countries. The Djerba Conference also discussed the viability of a “Mediterranean” tourism brand. No brand can be created without discussion and a sense of ownership by all the countries involved. This conference should be an opportunity for further discussion between stakeholders. I am aware that this is an area the Malta Hotels and Restaurants’ Association, which is represented here today, is particularly working on, and that it has planned its annual conference this November to foster further cooperation between Mediterranean players. The future of tourism is encouraging; the UNWTO forecasts that tourism will grow from 1.1 billion international travelers to 1.8 billion by 2030. For the North African region comprising Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia, UNWTO predicts growth from 18.7 million in 2010 to 46 million in 2030. MEDPRO, which is a recent 3 year project funded by the DG Research of the European Commission, has been analyzing the future of the Mediterranean. It identified three main factors that will strongly influence future tourism development and competitiveness in this region -- security, efficient use of ICT and adjustment to climate change. These are all areas that our countries can cooperate in, and this conference offers a good opportunity to do this.

These are but just some of the issues of mutual interest to be discussed at this conference.

If we work together, we will be in a better position to face challenges and improve competitiveness to the scope for cooperation between our countries -- tourism business development, hotels and the catering sector, infrastructure, tourism studies, regulatory frameworks, English language teaching, tourism product development, co operation with our national airline, ICT, cruising, maritime related activities and so on.

There are other areas that we can collaborate on, for example cooperation between the tourism training institutions in the region. Our Institute of Tourism Studies, founded in 1987, has acquired

So, I hand it over to you. There is enormous expertise in this room. I hope you enjoy sharing ideas and experiences. Together you will take tourism in the Med to an even higher level.

08 |

www.maltaeconomicupdate.com

TEU


MAlTA-TUNIsIA-lIbyA b2b NETwOrkINg FOrUM 2014

GREEN ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITIES FOR OUR NEIGHBOUR MAGHREB COUNTRIES

Photography by Clifton Fenech

HON. LEO BRINCAT, MINISTER FOR SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT, THE ENVIRONMENT AND CLIMATE CHANGE

It is indeed a pleasure and an honour to be able to address this networking forum which coincides with the official launch of the MALTA-TUNISIA-LIBYA Business Council Although many feel that the environment and the business sector might hinder each others’ activities on the contrary if they work in synergy together such a relationship could develop into a win win situation for both. Something that various local members of the corporate sector have long realised and put into practice for their own benefit. Being business friendly does not in any way imply that one should not be environment friendly. On the contrary by working together the groundwork will have been laid for the basis of what will effectively prove to be truly sustainable development in practice. Far beyond the customary buzz words and routine lip service. Through my past experience as an active member of the Union for the Mediterranean Parliamentary Committee on the Environment, Water and Energy where a number of Maghreb countries had participated actively and regularly I have long realised that our neighbour countries do not only stand to benefit from engagement in these green economic sectors. Beyond that they stand to also offer mutually beneficial opportunities for their own entrepreneurial class as well as for Maltese stakeholders who have been long well placed through their own expertise and network of foreign contacts to help facilitate such a process. By being catalysts and interlocutors instead of mere facilitators and intermediaries. While one fully understand the birth pangs that the transitionary process in our neighbour states brings with it, I am fully aware that even in the present circumstances various local members of the commercial community have been getting serious enquiries for air monitoring equipment, water purification/recycling equipment,

sewage treatment and pollution abatement plants for refineries and petrochemical plants in the indicated countries. I am aware that the prime movers of oil corporations in such countries are keen to improve the environmental situation where they operate. While we might have our own capacity building challenges to meet and address we nevertheless feel that we have enough well trained and qualified persons with the right level of expertise in both industry and academia who are well placed to play a pivotal role in such a process. I also foresee potential for co-operation in the environmental health sector where popular and civil society’s awareness of these needs is constantly growing but where the right mix of resources might not yet be in place or else might need to be enhanced further. In saying so I would like to emphasise the point that although my brief is the environment rather than the economy, I am nevertheless more than convinced that Malta-Tunisia-Libya environmental cooperation could offer many opportunities even from a purely economic perspective. I have long been briefed that one of the major selling points for environmental plants and technology through Malta is that the Maltese entrepreneurial class has the capacity and capability to train these friendly countries’ staff and personnel, providing routine maintenance as well as parts stockage and supplies and rapid intervention in the event of breakdown of eco-friendly plants and operations together with assistance in capacity building. But for those who are committed to give the end users good service as should always be the case, business prospects should indeed be good. Were we to look at what has been achieved in another Maghreb country nearby Morocco we can easily realise how the green economy has long been presented as a source of opportunities for wealth creation and new jobs.

The Hon. Dr Leo Brincat, Minister for Sustainable Development, the Environment and Climate Change addressing the Conference Malta-Tunisia-Libya B2B Networking Forum 2014 organised by The Editor of The Economic Update.

King Mohammed himself has often gone on record emphasising the need to foster the sustainable development process, in which the ecological question is central and at the base of green growth and a new economy that offers great opportunities for the emergence of innovative activities with potential for generating employment. The transition to a green economy aims in many countries at addressing not only environmental challenges but also any existing or resultant poverty and social inequality. With UNEP literally on the eve of transforming itself into a United Nations Environment Assembly, I am confident that the same way that it has been instrumental in fostering this new economy type of activity in far less developed countries, it can do the same to facilitate such a process in both Libya and Tunisia. In spite of our financial constraints and limitations we are committed to promote and encourage such initiatives in order to see our relations with both Libya and Tunisia further enhanced in both a business friendly and eco friendly manner. From which eventually the whole Mediterranean stands to benefit as a region.

TEU

May 2014 | THE ECONOMIC UPDATE

| 09


Malta-tunisia-libya b2b networking ForuM 2014

El Mutawasat Group offErs proMotions on Canon offiCE produCts at thE Malta-tunisia-libya b2b nEtworkinG foruM 2014 El Mutawasat Office Solutions, part of El Mutawasat Group and a Canon official partner for the Libyan territory, took part in the Malta-Tunisia-Libya B2B Networking Forum 2014 held at SmartCity, Malta.

This one-day business event was organised by Martin Vella, Editor of The Economic Update in collaboration with the Libyan and Tunisian Embassies in Malta, with the objective of promoting trade connections between the Maltese business community and private enterprises in Libya and Tunisia. The Malta-Tunisia-Libya B2B Networking Forum 2014 attracted over 20 Libyan companies and 40 Tunisian companies bringing together a variety of business sectors under one roof. The event comprised a conference addressed by several keynote speakers, followed by a forum with open debate and interactive networking activities. El Mutawasat exhibited at the event, where visitors could obtain information about the Canon range of office products, as well as learn how they could enhance their business operations and compete more successfully in their market by investing in office equipment solutions that best fit their work environment. A number of Maltese companies having investments in Libya expressed interest in El Mutawasat’s portfolio of Canon office products and engaged with the stand personnel to find out about 10 |

www.maltaeconomicupdate.com

the solutions that are best adapted to their business environments. El Mutawasat also ran a special promotion exclusively for attendees of the Networking Forum looking to equip their offices with the latest Canon products, including multifunctional printers, colour and B&W laser printers, and scanners at reduced promotional prices. As an office equipment solutions provider, El Mutawasat provides supply, installation, personnel training and technical support to its customers. The company is committed to provide its clients with the highest level of after-sales service and support possible. Moreover, the company’s association with Canon Middle East since May 2013 positions it as a leading player in modernising offices and increasing business productivity throughout the Libyan territory. El Mutawasat Group has a corporate office in Malta which is run together with their Maltese business partners Vicajo Company Limited. TEU

Source: Malta Independent



Malta-tunisia-libya b2b networking ForuM 2014

EasE of Doing BusinEss in

Tunisia

This page summarizes Doing Business 2014 data for Tunisia. The first table lists the overall “Ease of Doing Business” rank (out of 189 economies) and the rankings by each topic. It also lists the economy’s distance to frontier (DTF)** measure. The rest of the tables summarize the key indicators for each topic and benchmark against regional and high-income economy (OECD) averages.

eCOnOmy OveRvIeW RegIOn

Middle East & North Africa

InCOme CaTegORy

Upper Middle Income

POPulaTIOn

10,777,500

gnI PeR CaPITa (uS$) CITy COveRed

DOING BUSINESS 2014 RANK

DOING BUSINESS 2013 RANK***

51

49

4,150

DOING BUSINESS 2014 DTF** (% POINTS)

DOING BUSINESS 2013 DTF** (% POINTS)

Tunis

68.66

68.59

TOPICS

DB 2014 Rank

CHANGE IN RANK

-2 CHANGE IN DTF** (% POINTS)

0.07

DB 2013 Rank

Change in Rank

Starting a Business

70

63

-7

Dealing with Construction Permits

122

114

-8

Getting Electricity

55

53

-2

Registering Property

72

69

-3

Getting Credit

109

105

-4

Protecting Investors

52

51

-1

Paying Taxes

60

59

-1

Trading Across Borders

31

30

-1

Enforcing Contracts

78

77

Resolving Insolvency

39

39

-1 No change

No.

Procedure

1

Obtain topographical study of the construction site

*2

Obtain Tax clearance certificate

*3

Submit project brief to l’Agence Nationale de Protection de l’Environnement

4

Building plans reviewed by the Control Bureau

5

Obtain building permit

6 7 8

Time to Complete

Associated Costs

7 days

no charge

1 day

no charge

1 day

TND 1,200

7 days

TND 10,400

28 days

TND 900

Receive excavation inspection from the Municipality

1 day

no charge

Receive random municipal inspection

1 day

no charge

Request and receive inspection from the Inspection Bureau during construction work

1 day

TND 150

9

Request and receive final inspection from the Inspection Bureau upon completion of construction

1 day

TND 2,400

10

Request and receive final inspection and approval (“permis de récolement”) from the Municipality

14 days

no charge

11

Request and receive final inspection and approval from the civil protection

7 days

no charge

12

Apply for water connection

1 day

no charge

* 13

Apply for sewage connection

1 day

no charge

* 14

Apply for telephone connection

1 day

no charge

15

Receive inspection from SONEDE (water)

1 day

no charge

16

Receive inspection from ONAS (sewage)

1 day

no charge

* 17

Obtain water connection

21 days

TND 500

* 18

Obtain sewage connection

21 days

TND 500

* 19

Obtain telephone connection

10 days

TND 100

* Takes place simultaneously with another procedure. ** The distance to frontier (DTF) measure shows the distance of each economy to the “frontier,” which represents the highest performance observed on each of the topics including Getting Electricity across all economies included in Doing Business. An economy’s distance to frontier is indicated on a scale from 0 to 100, where 0 represents the lowest performance and 100 the frontier. ***Last year’s rankings are adjusted: they are based on 10 topics and reflect data corrections.

12 |

www.maltaeconomicupdate.com

Sources: International Finance Corporation; World Bank group

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Malta-tunisia-libya b2b networking ForuM 2014

EasE of Doing BusinEss in

LiBYa This page summarizes Doing Business 2014 data for Libya. The first table lists the overall “Ease of Doing Business” rank (out of 189 economies) and the rankings by each topic. It also lists the economy’s distance to frontier (DTF)** measure. The rest of the tables summarize the key indicators for each topic and benchmark against regional and high-income economy (OECD) averages. eCOnOmy OveRvIeW RegIOn

Middle East & North Africa

InCOme CaTegORy

Upper Middle Income

POPulaTIOn

6,154,623

gnI PeR CaPITa (uS$) CITy COveRed

DOING BUSINESS 2014 RANK

DOING BUSINESS 2013 RANK***

187

188

12,778

DOING BUSINESS 2014 DTF** (% POINTS)

DOING BUSINESS 2013 DTF** (% POINTS)

Tripoli

33.83

33.44

TOPICS

DB 2014 Rank

CHANGE IN RANK

1

DB 2013 Rank

CHANGE IN DTF** (% POINTS)

0.39 Change in Rank

Starting a Business

171

170

Dealing with Construction Permits

189

189

No change

-1

Getting Electricity

68

69

1

Registering Property

189

189

No change

Getting Credit

186

182

Protecting Investors

187

187

Paying Taxes

116

108

-8

Trading Across Borders

143

144

1

Enforcing Contracts

150

150

No change

Resolving Insolvency

189

189

No change

-4 No change

No.

Procedure

Time to Complete

Associated Costs

1

Check availabilty of company name

2 days

no charge

2

Draft memorandum and articles of association

7 days

1% of the capital of the company or 1,000 LYD, whichever higher

*3

Open a bank account and deposit paid-in minimum capital

3 days, simultaneous with previous procedure

Depends on the bank, but usually free or 5,000 LYD for depositing the capital

4

Pay Tax Duties

7 days

0.5% of the capital or 25 LYD

5

Apply and obtain registration at the commercial registry

4 days

150 LYD + 0.5% of the start-up capital

6

Registration at the Chamber of Commerce

2 days

162.5 LYD

7

Open a permanent bank account

1 day

no charge

8

Obtain an office lease

1 day

no charge

9

Obtain the operations license

10 days

100.5 LYD

10

Obtain a company stamp

1 day

20-70 LYD

* Takes place simultaneously with another procedure. ** The distance to frontier (DTF) measure shows the distance of each economy to the “frontier,” which represents the highest performance observed on each of the topics including Getting Electricity across all economies included in Doing Business. An economy’s distance to frontier is indicated on a scale from 0 to 100, where 0 represents the lowest performance and 100 the frontier. * **Last year’s rankings are adjusted: they are based on 10 topics and reflect data corrections.

14 |

www.maltaeconomicupdate.com

Sources: International Finance Corporation; World Bank group

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IT

IntroducIng datatech consultIng by Andrew J. Cauchi, Director

DataTech Consulting specialises in the design, implementation and support of SAP Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems. SAP is the only ERP solution that currently services over 24 different types of industry verticals. It is the best running ERP solution in market by delivering unparalleled products and support to its customers world wide through its huge network of independent SAP Partners. SAP is the number one choice for technology, scalability and adaptability. Suffices to say that 24% of the world’s best performing companies in the world run on SAP ERP. Already boasting a successful portfolio of SAP implementations and related projects in Malta and in Libya, DataTech Consulting has officially been appointed as an SAP Partner in the European Union and Middle East and North Africa territories (SAP

Service Partner and SAP Value Added Reseller). DataTech Consulting uses bestof-breed service delivery methodologies (including its proprietary methodology aptly called DOIT) to provide the client with the best possible service, both in terms of quality and efficiency, which of course translates into a significant reduction if project related expenses and a quicker return on IT investment.

Specialised SAP ERP training is considered internally to be a fundamental step in the development life cycle of an implementation project To date, our consultants have successfully carried out more than 32 SAP ERP implementations, and have been involved in more than 64 SAP ERP related projects in organisations of different sizes, industries, and levels of complexity.

Furthermore, DataTech Consulting excels in the provision of highly specialised SAP ERP training is considered internally to be a fundamental step in the development life cycle of an implementation project. Different training products have been developed by DataTech Consulting covering from basic training up to SAP KEY user training on specific SAP modules. All training material is available in different languages (including Arabic) for maximum training efficiency. Both DataTech Consulting (Malta) and DataTech Consulting (Libya) are members of DataTech Consulting International, which is an international organisation of independent DataTech Consulting firms wholly specialised in the provision of SAP products and services. To date, DataTech Consulting is present in 8 different countries in Europe, Africa, and Asia. TEU

May 2013 | THE ECONOMIC UPDATE

| 15


MSV Life top entrepreneur of the year awardS 2014

MSV LIFE TOP ENTREPRENEUR AWARDS 2014 INTERCONTINENTAL MALTA 16Th MAy 2014 - PART 1 By Carla Formosa

Exciting, entertaining and above all elite! Three words that best sum up the events of the most prestigious entrepreneur awards in Malta. The Economic Update is proud to announce the winners of Malta’s premier business awards, the MSV LIFE TOP Entrepreneur of the Year Awards 2014. The exclusive event was held for the third consecutive year on Friday 16th of May at the InterContinental Malta. Over 350 VIP guests, including members of diplomatic corps, leading politicians and media gathered with Malta’s most promising young entrepreneurs and established, distinguished businessmen, for a gala dinner ceremony. Along with a delectable dinner, plenty of entertainment was organised, including Flamenco dancers from Central Academy of Ballet, the acoustic duo Tact, Brian Role’ the magician and illusionist and a special solo performance by Maurice Mizzi himself. During the evening, each entrepreneur award was selected by a panel of independent judges including Mr. David G. Curmi CEO of MSV Life, the main sponsor for this year’s edition of the awards, Mr. Joe Cuschieri, Chairman of Lotteries and Gaming Authority, and Ms. Liz Barbaro Sant from Alberta, who were co-sponsoring the event. Other judges for the night included Dr. Tonio Portughese, PBS Chairman, Mr. Kenneth Farrugia, CEO Valletta Fund Management and Chairman of Finance Malta, Mr. Anthony Tabone, CEO of SmartCity, Dr. Gavin Gulia, MTA Chairman, Dr. Ann Fenech, Fenech 7 Fenech Advocates, Mr. Norman Mifsud, MSV Life and Mr. Ivan Bartolo. CEO 6PM, last year’s overall winner.

Also sponsoring this year’s award was PBS, who filmed the evening’s entire event. The MSV Life Top Entrepreneur Awards 2014 will be transmitted on TVM2 on Tuesday 27th May at 21.45hrs, with a repeat on Saturday 31st May at 15.30hrs. “This year’s MSV Life Top Entrepreneur Awards were a tremendous success with record-breaking participation. The competition was tough and winning was a big achievement for those who came out on top. Congratulations to the winners and to all of the competitors who consistently showcase the talent and excellence that represents The Economic Update’s growing business sector. To me everyone nominated is a winner in his or her own right,” said Martin Vella, Editor of the Economic Update and the mastermind behind this highly successful organisation. Messrs Attard & Co entertained guests with Castillo de Molina and Cavit Trento wines, as well as Zedda Pidras Liquor. Meanwhile, passionate about advisory services, self-described as ‘creative, tenacious and preserving,’ Anita Aloisio is celebrating the success of her value creating propositions after winning two top awards. Anita was awarded as the winner of the Corporate Financer of the Year Award and also Overall Best Entrepreneur of the Year Awards. Anita told the Economic Update, “I am thrilled to have been acknowledged by these prestigious awards for my work,” she declared ecstatically. Other winner for The MSV Life Top Entrepreneur of the Year Awards 2014 include:

• Ms. Anita Aloisio of Nexia BT is winner of the Corporate Financer of the Year Award and the Overall Top Entrepreneur of the Year Award • Mr. Dean Gera from Dean Gera & Co is the winner of the Top Male Entrepreneur of the Year Award • Ms. Sheila Dean from Equiom is the winner of the Top Female Entrepreneur of the Year Award • Mr. Angelo Dalli of Bit8 wins the Digital/It Entrepreneur of the Year Award and of the Technology Entrepreneur of the Year Award • Mr. Raymond Busuttil of IIG Bank winner of the Best Banker of the Year Award • Ms Stellina Galea of Stellina Lifestyle Changes won the Retail ^ Leisure Entrepreneur of the Year Award • Arch+ Architects’ Studio winners of the Best Entrepreneurial Ideas of the Year Award and of the Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award • Mr. Nathan Farrugia from Inspire wins the Corporate Social Responsibility Award • Mr. Tommy Diacono of New York’s Best is winner of the Emerging Entrepreneur of the Year Award • Mr. Sam Borg of Bortex is winner of the Family Business of the Year Award • Mr. Ulrik Bengtssan of Bettson is the winner of the iGaming Entrepreneur of the Year Award • Mr. Patrick J. O’Brien from Exante wins the International Trade Media of the Year Award • Mr. Maurice Mizzi is the winner of the Lifetime Achievement Award • Mr. Jonathan J. Borg of Smart Light Systems is the winner of the Most Entrepreneurial Company of the Year Award • Mr. Douglas Salt of Frank Salt winner of the Retail and Leisure Entrepreneur of the Year Award • Mr. Michael Pederson of Eat Today who are the winners of the Start-Up Company of the Year Award

16 |

www.maltaeconomicupdate.com


MSV LIfE TOP ENTrEPrENEUr Of THE yEAr AwArDS 2014

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

11

1. MSV Life CEO, David G. Curmi 2. Paul Peter Azzopardi and Cristina Arbociute, Compliance Manager, Exante 3. Cristina Arbociute, Anamaria Magri Pantea and Patrick O’Brien 4. Nathan Farrugia, with his wife Deidree, with family members and the team from Inspire 5. Nathan Farrugia of the Inspire Foundation with Martin Vella, the Editor of the Economic Update, the winner of the Corporate Social Responsibility Award 6. Liz Barbaro Sant, Dr. Gavin Gulia, MTA Chairman & Kenneth Farrugia, CEO of the Valletta Fund Management Ltd. 7. Denise Xuereb of AX Construction together with her fiance’ and AX Construction colleagues 8. Mr Joe Cushcieri, CEO of Lotteries and Gaming Authority with Mr Patrick Oqvist, CMO of Bettson 9. Joe Dimech, PBS and official MSV Life Top entrepreneur Awards presenter, together with his wife Carmen, PBS Chairman Tonio Porthugese and his wife Marlene 10. Arch+ Architects Studio’s Richard Borg, Warren Falzon and Adrian Mangion winners of the Best Entrepreneurial Ideas of the Year Award and of the Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award 11. Ms. Liz Barbaro Sant, Director of Alberta Group with Ms. Sheila Dean from Equiom, the winner of the Top Female Entrepreneur of the Year Award 12. John Formosa, Director of Network Publications Ltd, David G Curmi, CEO of MSV Life with Ms. Anita Aloisio of Nexia BT, winner of the Corporate Financer of the Year Award and the Overall Top Entrepreneur of the Year Award 13. Martin Vella, editor of the Economic Update with Margaret Brincat, Sales Manager of the Economic Update.

12

13 May 2014 | THE ECONOMIC UPDATE

| 17


MSV LIFE TOP ENTREPRENEUR AWARDS 2014

NothiNg

but good By Martin Vella

Following a competitive judging process during this year’s annual MSV LIFE TOP Entrepreneur of the Year Awards 2014, Jonathan J. Borg, Director of Smart Light Systems was declared winner of the Most Entrepreneurial Company of the Year Award. Jonathan’s entrepreneurship has enabled Smart Light Systems to diversify into many different areas, including the expansion into CSR traffic safety systems and LED lighting over the past five years. We meet the top entrepreneur to share his views about creating, building, and launching a business, while being supported by an amazing team.

TEU: What are your experiences as a winning entrepreneur? JB: Well this is honestly the first time that I have won anything as an entrepreneur, I was already quite proud to be nominated, under three categories nonetheless, but winning “Most Entrepreneurial Company of the Year Award” was quite satisfying for me.

As a company we have strived to achieve innovative breakthroughs over the years in the field of energy efficiency through lighting systems, and truly our accomplishments have been successful because of the driving team who keep on pushing to move the company forward. Suffice-it to say that what was original developed as a one-time CSR traffic safety solution, has today driven us have a complete new portfolio which we keep on fine tuning on a daily basis. This kind of forward thinking approach within the team has kept us ahead, I therefore am proud to have won this award for the whole team. TEU: What does winning such a prestigious accolade means to you?

JB: The first hard lesson you learn when running a company is that companies give you headaches, increased stress levels and at times more problems than you can handle. But any successful entrepreneur manages to take on the challenges just to push themselves further. It never once crossed my mind to open a company and do the things I do in order to win an award, but honestly it feels good to 18 |

www.maltaeconomicupdate.com

Martin Vella, Editor of The Economic Update, with Mr. Jonathan J. Borg of Smart Light Systems, the winner of the Most Entrepreneurial Company of the Year Award

be recognised for the efforts you do. Winning this prestigious accolade, especially in a year where we keep on finding energy efficient lighting solutions not only for the private sector but also for the communities around us, to me shows that we are doing something right, and that the public appreciates the high quality solutions we are developing.

I was quite surprised to receive communication from different educational institutes to present our success to students in order to inspire them to pursue their entrepreneurial dreams TEU: Is winning not as important as being recognized, or vice-versa?

JB: I think in general we live in a society where being recognised does not happen so often and when you consider the amazing talent and quality products which our economy breeds. It truly is a pity that recognition doesn’t come naturally to us, so I would say recognition is already enough to give that person the will to keep on being entrepreneurial. Winning is obviously not everything, being nominated was already an important step for us and we were all quite proud. Of course winning made us prouder and gave us a boost to keep on striving for excellence. TEU: What significance winning in this dimension presents and does this add more responsibility as a role model and inspiration to others?

JB: I never expected to be a role model, and even the thought of it makes me smile, however I was quite surprised to receive communication from different educational institutes to present our success to students in order to inspire them to pursue their entrepreneurial dreams, so the responsibility to be a role model is unexpectedly felt. As to being a winner, we will definitely use this accolade as another achievement under our belt to further show potential clients what kind of team they are dealing with when they deal with Smart Light Systems. TEU: What do you think of the organisation, the event and also participating in such competition?

JB: I think the event was very well organised, from the moment I was nominated till the gala dinner I felt I had as fair a chance as all the rest to compete. Being asked to respond to a specific question on camera was a nice touch and gives the judges more insight on who the candidates are and this enables them decide more easily. TEU: What are your suggestions and recommendations for future?

JB: I can see this awards system working annually with more categories, to cast a wider net so to speak, such as more focus on female entrepreneurship and perhaps a category which could incorporate state entities to participate too. TEU

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“2014 Most Entrepreneurial Company Of The Year� Our clients give us the opportunity to break boundaries in the field of energy-efficient lighting... ...we give them the opportunity to save real costs!

Street Safety Illumination

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Tailor-made lighting

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MSV Life Top enTrepreneur AwArdS 2014

A CorporAte with A ConsCienCe

By Martin Vella

The top business women are shining examples of entrepreneurship. They have achieved their elite status by creating valued products and services, applying deft management skills and exercising the determination required to succeed in today’s business environment. No wonder that Ms. Anita Aloisio of Nexia BT was rightfully proclaimed winner of the Corporate Financer of the Year Award and then went on to carry the Overall Top Entrepreneur of the Year Award during MSV Life Top Entrepreneur Awards 2014.

Martin Vella, Editor of The Economic Update awarding Ms. Anita Aloisio of Nexia BT the Corporate Financer of the Year Award

TEU: What are your experiences as a winning entrepreneur? AA: After the initial euphoria of winning; being invited to various events and interviewed quite a number of times; one of the most meaningful experiences is the multitude of personal messages which I received. Overall, I would describe the experience as an extremely positive one, spurring me on to continue striving for excellence. TEU: What does winning such a prestigious accolade mean to you? AA: It means a lot. I must say that the competition was tough and all the nominees were relevant entrepreneurs who undoubtedly are doing their utmost in their different areas of businesses and expertise. In fact, the most recurring themes mentioned by the participants were their passion in what they do, their hard work, client focus, attention to detail and correct packaging of product/service. The overall top award definitely recognises the combination of these qualities in an entrepreneur. After my nomination for the Corporate Financier of the Year Award, I took the participation in this competition very seriously. Getting a nomination was like being offered a piece of a cake. Winning two awards meant that I could eat the cake and the cherry on it, as well. I could not have wished for anything more and for this I am extremely grateful to all those who in one way or other have contributed to where I stand today. TEU: Is winning not as important as being recognised, or vice-versa? AA: In my line of work, most often than not, a lot of hours and effort have to be put in, to 20 |

www.maltaeconomicupdate.com

come up with a remedy for a business or to produce a concise and straight to the point advice. Sometimes, it might take a couple of weeks of in-depth thinking and analysis about a particular situation before a solution is found. During these times, I will not try to just understand clients, but also try to be in their shoes. Time consuming? Of course! Requires a lot of effort? Definitely! Experience thought me that clients will eventually realise that a lot of work has been put in. It is encouraging for that work to receive its due recognition. At this stage of development of our service offering, I feel that recognition is also very important for my team and especially to the firm. As Bob Nelson said: “People may take a job for more money, but they often leave it for more recognition.” So being recognised for all the efforts from when I started from Ground Zero four years ago, to date, reassures our credo. Although I was adamant not to put undue pressure on myself and on my team to win the overall top award, we committed ourselves to prepare for the award night in the best possible way. The award criteria were explicit and transparent, so I was confident that the panel of judges would award those that deserved to be recognised within the context of best fulfilling the required criteria. When I was participating, winning was not the main priority, doing things right and to the best of my ability was the most important aspect. This brought with it the desired result of winning. In Aristotle’s words ”In the arena of human life, the honours and rewards fall to those who show their good qualities in action.” So winning became important in terms of the recognition of the good quality that I, my team and the firm is able to demonstrate in action. TEU: What significance winning in this dimension presents and does this add more responsibility as a role model and inspiration to others? AA: I will quote Winston Churchill here. “This is not the end, this is not even the beginning of the end, this is just perhaps the end of the beginning.” This is exactly how I feel at present. I have put forward this question to myself – “What next?”. I did

not need to ponder much on this. We go to the next level – to our next goal of being amongst the very top. On a personal level, I do feel the responsibility to retain a high level of performance and to continue being a role model…most especially to women. Indeed, where there is a will, there is a way…. there could possibly be more than one route to follow. What matters is that one chooses the right path that best suits the needs and circumstances at that particular point in time. So, in whatever I do and from my actions, I hope to be an inspiration to others and to be of encouragement to those who are hesitant to taking the next step. TEU: What do you think of the organisation, the event and also participating in such competition? AA: The organisation of the event was impeccable, totally flawless. From the point of my nomination forward, the organisers made themselves available to answer all my questions and to inform me of what was required and the timeframes for delivery. The participation in this competition provided me with new experiences. The production of the 30 seconds video interview was a challenge in itself, a challenge I took up wholeheartedly. Getting across a message in such a short time requires the right choice of words, being to the point and above all clarity. Also, the judges were going to judge me on what they saw. My focus was on how to get the judges to know me from such a short clip. Everything was going to be taken in consideration: my composure, my facial expressions, my gestures. So I did give attention to detail, but above all I was as natural as possible, I wanted to be my true self. How my friends and family know me. I think such events are crucial for budding or experienced entrepreneurs alike. Entrepreneurs are continually taking risks, dealing with day-to-day struggles, overcoming challenges. Everyone enjoys getting a pat on the back, even entrepreneurs. This is an excellent opportunity to showcase the endeavours of enterprising individuals. I am grateful for the opportunity and is definitely an event to be repeated. TEU

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MSV Life Top enTrepreneur AwArdS 2014

A ShAred PASSion for excellence By Martin Vella

When Sheila Dean Group Managing Director of Equiom was announced the winner of the coveted MSV Life Top Female Entrepreneur of the Year Award 2014, little did she know that she had just beat off stiff competition from incredible entries from some of Malta’s most well deserving female entrepreneurs. We caught up with Sheila to share her joy over her recent outstanding achievement.

AwArdS: • MSV Life Top Entrepreneur of the Year Awards 2014 - Top Female Entrepreneur: Sheila Dean • Private Client Practitioner: Top 25 Trust Companies 2014 • Private Client Practitioner: Top 25 Most Admired UK Companies 2014 • Citywealth International Financial Centre Awards 2014 – Editor’s Choice: Sheila Dean • Citywealth Leaders List 2014 – Leading Trustee: Sheila Dean • Private Client Practitioner: Top 25 Trust Companies 2013 • Private Client Practitioner: Top 25 Most Admired Companies 2013 • Private Client Practitioner: Top 50 Most Influential: Sheila Dean 2013 • Citywealth Magic Circle awards 2013 – Runner up: Sheila Dean – Woman of the Year • Citywealth IFC Power Women – Top 100 • Citywealth Leaders List 2013 – Leading Trustee: Sheila Dean • Citywealth Leaders List 2012 – Leading Trustee: Sheila Dean • Women in Business – North West & Isle of Man International Business Woman of the Year 2011: Sheila Dean

Sheila Dean, Group Managing Director, Equiom

”Over recent years Sheila has guided Eqiuom’s business through a substantial period of expansion and Equiom is now recognised as a leading and trusted provider of trust and corporate services over three jurisdictions. “I learned at an early age that hard work and determination are essential ingredients for success in the corporate world, and my enthusiasm to develop and achieve has increased year on year. I have always set high standards for myself and the business and consequently endeavoured to ensure that these standards are not only met, but exceeded,” emphasises Sheila. “I am delighted to be leading the business through such an exciting period of growth, and to be awarded ‘MSV Life Top Female Entrepreneur of the Year’ as a result of this. It is an honour to be recognised for achieving my passion in life and it motivates me to continue pushing the business to the next level,” she says. Sheila stressed that she cannot take sole credit for her achievements; without her experienced team to support her - at home and at work - she would not be in a position to maintain the momentum required 22 |

www.maltaeconomicupdate.com

for Equiom to create and achieve new possibilities. “I like to lead by example and I think achievements such as this should be shared in order to encourage my colleagues to also strive for the best in everything they do. I’m proud that my team shares my passion to keep driving Equiom forward and to provide the highest levels of client service,” Sheila affirmed. She said that this award is a reflection of the enthusiasm and dedication Equiom team all share and she hopes it inspires her colleagues to strive to fulfil their potential, both on a personal and business level. “The Gala Dinner at which the awards were presented was a marvellous event to be a part of. It was fabulous to celebrate business success with like-minded people. I am still receiving congratulations for my award and I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate my fellow award winners, as well as the other nominees in my category for their outstanding entrepreneurship,” stated Sheila. Concluding, she said, “At Equiom, we constantly endeavour to be the best and this philosophy is supported by the various awards

we have earned over the years. However, this type of recognition must be backed up by a strong corporate philosophy to which every member of our 180-strong team is exposed. In Equiom’s case, the tagline, ‘A Partnership Built on Trust’ reflects the long-term, valued relationships we build with our clients and intermediaries. On a personal level, being recognised for success in my field is obviously important to me. However, gaining trust and respect from clients as a result of building lasting relationships and positive experiences remains my top priority. TEU

About Equiom Equiom is fast becoming the stand out business in the fiduciary services sector with offices in some of the world’s premier International Finance Centres - including the Isle of Man, Jersey and Malta. We provide a range of innovative and effective fiduciary solutions that have widespread appeal to both corporations as well as high net worth individuals. Equiom is an independent, management-owned company allowing us to think strategically and act quickly. We are a thriving business with plans to continue to extend our jurisdictional reach and product range, in order to provide increased planning opportunities for existing and potential clients.


Your dream yesterday, is your reality today

It’s understanding the importance of protecting the dream that sets us apart from the rest. In addition to excellent service and first class credentials the highly experienced team at Equiom can provide efficient and professional fiduciary services.

Our services include: Trusts & Companies: Yachting & Aviation: Crewing: e-Gaming: Property:

the establishment, formation and administration of trusts, foundations and companies multi-jurisdictional registration, VAT planning and effective ownership structures MLC compliant employment solutions and automated payroll management of licence applications, tax-efficient compliant corporate structures and the provision of key personnel tailored property solutions and the highest standards of corporate governance

“…The proactive approach taken by Equiom ensures that their innovative ‘added value’ client proposition distinguishes them from their peers, and we thoroughly enjoy working with their professional and dedicated team...” Treasury Advisor

Malta: Tel: +356 2546 6614 | Email: enquiries@equiom.com.mt | www.equiom.im Equiom (Malta) Limited is authorised to act as a trustee and fiduciary services provider by the Malta Financial Services Authority.


MSV Life Top enTrepreneur AwArdS 2014

Service, LoyaLty, HoneSty, and integrity

Stellina Galea and Dr Gavin Gulia awarded the Retail and Leisure Entrepreneur of the Year Award Despite all the hurdles and obstacles, there are lots of women who are quietly working very hard and making a change in society not only for themselves but for people around them. Three exceptional female entrepreneurs stood out during this year’s MSV Life Top Entrepreneur Awards. They all have inspiring stories to tell. One of them, Ms Stellina Galea CPA of Stellina’s Lifestyle Changes and YTC won the Retail & Leisure Entrepreneur of the Year Award. Today she is running two enterprises which are thriving and which employ many qualified people.

24 |

www.maltaeconomicupdate.com

What does winning such a prestigious accolade mean to you? Winning this award was an exciting experience for me, one which I thoroughly enjoyed, including the Gala Night. I must state that it is thanks to the team of staff at YTC and Stellina’s Lifestyle Changes who constantly support me and provide the backup in both business ventures that winning this accolade was possible. I gauge my success in business by the smiles on my clients’ faces. On the night, the judges returned the compliment by putting a smile on my face. This provides me with the encouragement to persevere in making both organisations larger and better. What significance does winning in this dimension present? The `Retail and Leisure Entrepreneur of the Year Award’ encompasses my two main activity sectors, since YTC’s operation in the travel industry offers the ultimate in leisure, both with its skiing holidays and relaxing mountain summer holidays. Stellina’s Lifestyle Changes, in the health, fitness and well-being industry, might seem as hard work initially to clients wishing to achieve fat loss, but eventually it becomes a way of life, offering several leisure opportunities. Once past the initial hurdle of achieving fat loss, the possibility of participating in sport and other social activities under a new lifestyle pushes leisure to the forefront of our clients’ daily life. Does winning this award add more responsibility as a role model and inspiration to others? The acting as a role model and inspiration to others is fundamental at Stellina’s Lifestyle Changes. I make no secret of the fact that I was overweight myself, that I lost weight, and that if I could do it, then so can my clients. The fact that I have experienced what my own clients are experiencing helps me to emphatise with them, and to try and make their own experience easier. I do believe that this acts as an inspiration to persons who are afraid to take the plunge and start to achieve their own goals. TEU

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World Cup 2014: ExClusivE intErviEW With lEgEnd pElE

Beyond FootBall: ResponsiBle engagement

By Mustapha Kessous

The most recognisable face-and name –in the world’s most popular sport is about to take on an even more public role, as Brazil to host ht e2014 World Cup. But event looking to the future, there are some questions from the past that will go forever unanswered.Pele’ doesn’t shake your hand; he takes you in his arms and gives you a hug so tight you can hear his heart beating. After the FIFS Golden Ball award ceremony in Zurich, Edson Arantes do Nascimento, better known as Pele’, sat down for an extended interview with Le Monde. Now 71 years old and still as stylish as ever, “King” Pele’ talks about Brazil hosting the next World Cup, a crown he helped win three times (1958, 1962 and 1970), as well as corruption and racism in soccer. He also can’t resist the age-old question about who is the game’s all-time greatest.

TEU: What does the 2014 World Cup in Brazil represent for you as its official ‘Ambassador’?

EAN: I don’t want to give the impression that I am the World Cup. The most important thing is the image of my country and its influence throughput the world. I remember no one really knew about Brazil in 1958 when I went to Europe. When I arrived at the training camp In Switzerland where the World Cup was being held, the Brazilian flag had a circle instead of the diamond. From then on, I have had just one wish for the World Cup: to used it to help my people, my country. TEU: What image of Brazil do you want to show the world?

EAN: Brazil is the fifth most powerful country in the world! But I would like there to be less poverty and more social equality. 26 |

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After the World Cup, there will be the Olympic Games in 2016. The government and the people must make the most of these important occasions to modernise the country. The two events will consolidate the changes already underway. We want to make sure that the income from the World Cup and the Olympics is shared amongst all the population. We have to do a good job. This will give investors the confidence to come to Brazil: we have lots of space, land and minerals, Now is the time to invest here! TEU: What could stop investors from believing in Brazil?

EAN: It is the political differences in the country that worry us. They could endanger the work currently underway to make the World Cup a success. These internal political problems can also lead to corruption and excessive spending. Spending too much on

the construction of the stadiums is out of the question because the money is coming from the people. We cannot afford to find ourselves with these “elephants” which won’t have any use after the World Cup. We need to make the most of this opportunity to build schools and universities that will actually be of use afterwards. TEU: Brazilian football is also being undermined by corruption…. EAN: There is some cleaning up to be done, but not only in Brazilian football. Now is the time to clean things up, from the top of FIFA down to the bottom. TEU: How would you explain the fact that Brazil football is no longer at the top of the world rankings? EAN: The best Brazilian players develop in Europe. Brazilian clubs have sold far too many players: all the top ones go abroad. This


WOrlD CUP 2014: ExClUsIvE INTErvIEW WITH lEgEND PElE

means that the national team doesn’t have enough time to play together. This is proof of the bad management of football. If the top teams, like Flamengo, Corinthians and Vasco, were better run, they wouldn’t need to sell their players all the time. However, our training works well. We just need to keep the young players in the country for longer. TEU: You were Minister for Sports between 1995 and 1998. What did you take away from that experience? EAN: I was very proud of that; I freed Brazilians footballers from slavery. Before I took the post, the player belonged completely to his club: he wasn’t free to transfer, even at the end of his contract. And when some clubs had no money left, they would go to the bank and say: “I will give you my player”. They treated the players like merchandise, like slaves. Fortunately thanks to Henrique Cardozo who was president at the time, this situation ended in 1996. But we need to go even further. We need to further limit the role of agents, who are given too much importance. TEU: Is there too much money in modern football? EAN: No. The only difference with my era is that today there are sponsors involved. The true question is not about money, but who is the best player in the world. TEU: And who is the best player in the world? EAN: Today? I like Messi. He’s a top player TEU: What differentiates you from him? EAN: There are some big differences. Technically, we are at practically the same level. With me nobody ever which foot I was going to use: I played with both. I also scored lots of goals with headers. Messi’s left foot is good, but his right foot is better. He is a very

good player at Barcelona, but when he plays with the Argentinian national team he doesn’t have the same level of success. Neymar is also very strong with both feet, very intelligent. This comparison of styles makes me think of (France’s Michel) Platini, who was a very good player, but (the Netherlands) Johan Cruyff was quicker.

It is absurd to say that there is racism in football. How many matches are played each week throughout the World? A huge number! Football is multicoloured TEU: So, is Messi better than you?

EAN: It is difficult to say: football lovers would say “he is the man of the moment”. Some will say Beethoven didn’t know to play the piano, others will say Michelangelo didn’t know how to paint, and Pele’ didn’t know how to play football. But we all received a gift from God. When Messi has scored 1283 goals as I have and wins three World Cups, we’ll talk about it again. We don’t need to compare people. Football changes, records are made to be broken, but it will be difficult to beat mine. People ask me all the time “When will the next Pele’ be born?” Never! My mother and father have closed the factory. TEU: You were the first black man to become a minister in Brazil. Is there a problem with racism? EAN: Racism doesn’t exist in Brazil... it is absurd to say that there is racism in football. How many matches are played each week throughout the World? A huge number! Football is multicoloured.

TEU: And yet, you have been insulted on the pitch, haven’t you? EAN: Many times, and I took my revenge

by scoring two extra goals for every insult. Players apologised after the incident. I have insulted players as well, but it was never racist. With all the media coverage and the internet, we just talk about it a lot more. TEU: Do you think that you have contributed to changing the image of black people? EAN: Yes, I think so. There were two occasions in particular. The 1958 World Cup, when the King of Sweden came down onto the pitch: for the first time in history, there was a photo taken of him shaking hands with a black man. That photo was seen worldwide. The second event was even Queen Elizabeth of Great Britian knighted me; that sent a very important message. Something else also happened to me: in 1975, my contact with Santos ended and Henry Kissinger, then US Secretary of State, came to see me to say: “You have to come to the United States to develop football”. And, in the US, there was racism. I think that my present on the Cosmos in New York helped to change things. One last anecdote, I went to play in Zaire in 1969 with Santos, The civil war there stopped for our match. At the time, there was no internet, but everyone found out what happened. TEU: How would you like people to remember you? EAN: You know, Pele’ is the most famous name in the world. I can go everywhere; if I’m looking for a job, I find one. More seriously, after my death, I would like people to remember that I was a good person who always wanted to unite people and draw communities together. And for them to remember me as… a good player. TEU

Courtesy of Le Monde, The Interview People All Rights Reserved

Profile

The 1958 World Cup Final: Pelé makes it 3-1

Name: Edson Arantes do Nascimento (1) Born: 23 october 1940 (1) (São Paulo, Brazil) Position: Striker Caps: 91 (77 goals) Clubs: Santos, New York Cosmos Trophies: Brazil - 3x World Champion (1958, 1962, 1970) Santos - 2x Intercontinental Cup (1962, 1963) 2x Copa Libertadores (1962, 1963) 6x Brazilian Champion (1961, 1962, 1963, 1964, 1965, 1968) New York Cosmos 1x U.S. Champion (1977) Honours: 1x IFFHS Player of the Century

May 2014 | THE ECONOMIC UPDATE

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TransporT & LogisTics

ExprEss Logigroup intErnationaL FrEight sErvicE

Within today’s booming marketplace, companies must be adaptable and specialised. As a logistics company based in Malta, we at Express Logigroup use innovative strategies to achieve specific goals and this is why we are unrivalled and unparalleled in our international services. Each of our services is designed independently, fine-tuned to perfection and presented to the customer to meet their individual demands, guaranteeing efficiency and strengthening our legacy amongst customers and companies alike. Even our very name, Express Logigroup, was developed through a dynamic process. Express Logigroup offers custom-made solutions even to most remote locations and our coordinated methods ensure that your logistical needs are met professionally. We have dedicated our time and listened to our customers’ needs to create innovative and practical service pillars which altogether encompass a 360 degree service offering. Through integrated logistics solutions and innovative outsourcing concepts we relief our customers of peripheral tasks and enable them to concentrate on their core 28 |

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business. The customer benefit – cost savings and improved quality – is always in the foreground of our company. We, therefore, continuously monitor and optimize procedures and processes and thus permanently improve the efficiency of our services. Express Logigroup co-operates throughout Europe with extremely efficient and privately operated companies, that like us, act independently of large corporations and which are flexible and much more customer centric. Service-oriented company philosophies and highly efficient procedures place the customer at the center of our attention. In addition to our regular part and full loads services, Express Logigroup offers courier, trade fair logistics, professional packing, home to home removal services and professional logistical consultancy service. Presently, Express Logigroup is in the process of implementing the ISO 9001, a series of international standards developed by the International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO) and this shall be finalised and fully implemented by June 2014. TEU

For more information please visit expresslogigroup.com Courtesy of John Wilson


Our reputation for reliability and trust comes from over 1000 customers serviced in just over 12 months. We’re Express Logigroup and we create industry freight solutions. We operate a lean, non-bureaucratic organization so our customers may truly feel that we’re partners in business. Jonathan Vella CEO

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EVENTS

THOMAS SMITH GROUP SUPPORTS MDINA GRAND PRIX FOR THIRD CONSECUTIVE YEAR

Thomas Smith Group announced that it shall once again support the Valletta Grand Prix Foundation, who shall be organising its annual Mdina Grand Prix event on the 9th through to 12th October. Thomas Smith shall this year be sponsoring the scrutineering event, which will be held on Sunday 5th October at the Malta National Aquarium, whereby all participating cars are thoroughly examined by officials. Last year’s event attracted over 25,000 spectators over the duration of the event, and aspires once again to attract a large audience this year. This year’s Mdina Grand Prix marks its sixth year, with the original two held around the Valletta bastions, and the subsequent years against Mdina’s historical backdrop.

You Can Trust Thomas Smith to Deliver

The event has already enticed many local and international race drivers. The Valletta Grand Prix Foundation claims that this year’s event will involve a minimum of 65 participating cars, 12 of which being foreign participants.

Shipping | Insurance Freight Forwarding | Port Agency

Mr. Joe Gerada, Thomas Smith Group Managing Director said “We are proud to extend this relationship with such a dedicated foundation and recognised event. The interest generated, bringing local and international classic car enthusiasts and spectators together in a picturesque setup within Malta’s former capital city, is significant. We are therefore thrilled to be part of this exciting and prestigious event once again.” An avid classic car fanatic himself, Mr. Gerada emphasises on Thomas Smith Group’s dedication to supporting local sports, and would like to wish all participants and the organisers a successful outcome.

With over 165 years of integrity, insight, expertise and experience we make sure that our clients are always in good hands for any shipping and insurance requirement.

Give us a call on 2205 8058

Further information about the Mdina Grand Prix event, schedule of races, and registration, can be found on the official website www.vallettagrandprix.com. Thomas Smith is a group of companies offering a diversified portfolio of services in international shipping and logistics - with operations in Malta, Libya, Algeria and Tunisia - and insurance. Visit www.tcsmith.com for more information about the vast range of services Thomas Smith Group can offer.

www.tcsmith.com

TEU

May 2014 | THE ECONOMIC UPDATE

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Quality Brands – SOLAR SOLUTIONS only deals with large photovoltaic and Inverter manufacturers who do not only depend on the sales of Photovoltaic for revenue. Kyocera, Hyundai Heavy Industries and SMA are big organisations that inspire confidence in such investments. The financial and brand stability is a testimony to the organization’s promise of a 25 year guarantee on the photovoltaic solar modules. Quality Materials – The experience gained gave us the know

how to use the right quality materials, fittings and switchgear. Choosing cheaper material can make your PV system cheaper but not as safe and long lasting making it costlier in the long run.

Quality Human Resources – A company

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EXPRESS TRAILERS New Road service from Spain With 4 days transit In over 20 years of business with Spain, Express Trailers has developed a network of over 30 depots across the Spanish peninsula, including Portugal. Now, together with its groupage sea service from Barcelona, Express Trailers is offering more flexible solutions with a new road service direct from Spain with a four-day transit time. The service includes: From Barcelona, departure every Thursday, arriving Malta every Monday From Malta, departure every Saturday, arriving in Barcelona every Thursday Delivery of retail and fashion products, and all goods requiring a temperature-controlled environment Daily connection from Portugal to our weekly scheduled departure to Malta from Barcelona For all enquiries and more information, contact us on sales@expressgroup.com

www.expressgroup.com


TransporT & LogisTics

ExprEss TrailErs sTrEngThEns sErvicE To and From spain New Road seRvice fRom spaiN GuaRaNtees 4 days tRaNsit

In over 20 years of business with Spain, Express Trailers has developed a reliable and strong network of over 30 depots across the Spanish peninsula, including Portugal. Only last year, Express Trailers also established a collaboration with Spanish transport and logistics company Transportes Tresserras which established a stronger and more reliable supply chain of chilled and frozen food products from Spain to Malta. This collaboration enabled bookings even for the smallest shipments throughout Spain, including the Canary Islands and the Balearic Islands. Now, together with its groupage sea service from Barcelona, Express Trailers has initiated a set of more flexible solutions with a new road service direct from Spain with a four-day transit time. The service includes departure every Thursday from Barcelona, arriving Malta every Monday and departure from Malta every Saturday, arriving in Barcelona every Thursday. The service also includes daily connection from Portugal to Express Trailers’ weekly scheduled departure to Malta from Barcelona. “We have been seeing a growing number of requests from our customers for collection of food products from Spain over the past months. In order to satisfy this demand in a reliable way, we chose to strengthen our connections to accommodate growing trade and potential new companies doing business with or from Spain,” explained David Fleri Soler, Marketing & Business Development Manager at Express Trailers. 34 |

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Express Trailers’ services to and from Spain are currently handling the delivery of retail and fashion products and all goods requiring a temperature-controlled environment thanks to the company’s fleet of reefer temperature-controlled and GPRSmonitored trailers.

We chose to strengthen our connections to accommodate growing trade and potential new companies doing business with or from Spain “An increasing amount of customers are looking for a more genuine product, for a wider variety and throughout all the year not only seasonal. This new collaboration with Transportes Tresserras makes the availability of this wide choice a possibility, offering importers peace of mind, a reliable service at a competitive price and this is very important especially for the import of food products that have a short shelf-life,” added David Fleri Soler. “Whilst Malta’s geographical position in the middle of the Mediterranean has and is still considered as a competitive advantage for hubbing of goods through Malta to the EU and North Africa, it poses challenges of accessibility. Our team at Express Trailers is actively exploring new modes and routes towards this objective – to make Malta more competitive as a hub. Spain is our more recent development,” concluded Franco Azzopardi, Chairman & CEO of Express Group. TEU


project management

Sharing Knowledge and inSpiration By Martin Vella

QP management is an organisation that provides reputable design and project management service by researched and passionate professionals. David Xuereb, CEO of QP Management explains that hard work, persistence and commitment of each and every professional officer that has formed part of QP Management is at the core of the company’s values. In this interview, David stresses the importance of the intrinsic values of honesty, integrity, trust, respect, and innovation through unique management.

TEU: Can you tell us a little bit about yourself? DX: I am married with three wonderful children. I am an architect by profession. I then went on to specialise in structural engineering and project management. While I currently lead a multi-disciplinary team of professionals working in the field of the built environment, my current professional interest lies in sustainable real estate design and infrastructure. I am an active lobbyist for the development of a serious green industry in Malta. My main area of influence is obviously that related to buildings and therefore carbon footprint and resource efficiency are high in my agenda. TEU: Why did you choose to get involved in architecture, engineering, building and construction business? DX: No one in my family has been involved in this business. From a young age, I have always been fascinated with the opportunity of being creative through research and study to enable the development of beautiful and functional buildings. University studies, research and innovation principles have enabled me to discover that whatever knowledge one gathers, this is never enough ….. hence the need and motivation for constant research and updates. The rapid development of technology has made this journey even more exciting. I also lecture at University and the opportunity of sharing knowledge and inspiration has offered me the opportunity to remain constantly on the look-out for the next steps in the market and the development of a career in the industry of the built environment. 36 |

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TEU: How do you view QP Management’s perspective on the building and construction industry? DX: Our vision for QP Management is far reaching. As I said earlier, I am constantly motivated with the opportunities that the development of market needs, technology and innovative thought bring about. QP Management’s expertise range is wide and includes, planning, architecture, civil and structural engineering, integrated building services, interior design, project management, cost/contract/value management, health and safety and design for sustainability. Our mission is built on what quality, form and extent of professional services ought to be provided by an organisation such as QP Management in the next five to ten years in the various regions we operate in. We aim to have QP Management be a catalyst in the regeneration of the construction sector and the development of a sustainable green building industry. QP Management is strongly engaged in this undertaking in Malta and Libya. TEU: What current projects are ongoing in Libya and how is your workforce split between Europe and Africa? DX: QP Management benefits from a strong reputation in qualitative and successful development projects in Europe and Africa. During the past 35 years, we have been and continue to develop engagements in significant design and management assignments on projects in both of these continents. QP head office is on the B’Kara bypass, but we also have other offices on Tripoli and London. QP management have successfully executed projects in Malta, UK, Portugal, Hungary, Czech Republic, Russia, Tunisia, Sudan and Nigeria. Our workforce is flexible and moves efficiently to areas of service. Technology today, allows us to provide various services remotely and in conjunction with other international players in the market.


PrOjECT MANAgEMENT

TEU: What are QP Management’s objectives? DX: As explained before, QP management has a serious track record for internationalisation. Project types in which we have had a very active role include hospitality, environmental, residential, commercial, retail, health and education, leisure and sport, aviation, roads and infrastructure, industrial and telecommunications. Our targets are to further this development and interest in other development sectors and services by further diversifying our areas of expertise and location in which these services are provided. We are currently working on expanding our presence in other African countries such as Algeria, Egypt, Mozambique, Uganda and South Africa. We are similarly working on developing presence in other European countries and the Gulf states. TEU: How does the company offer a full range of design and management services in real estate development and investment, planning, architectural design and structural and building services engineering. DX: The underlying philosophy of QP Management is very strong a design coordination service that is considered an essential prelude to successful project management and the implementation of a reliable project cost plan. Given that QP Management engages professionals in all areas of design, then design coordination is a significant strength of this company that makes us leaders in this field. Seasoned developers, investors or contractors quickly understand the opportunities that this offers them in developing strong, consolidated, realistic projects that can be implemented in a reasonable way and supported by reliable cost plans and budgets. Our offices are designed to have planners, architects, engineers, designers, project managers and cost mangers to sit on one table in no time to discuss project coordination issues efficiently and effectively. TEU: How do you describe what QP Management does? DX: QP Management is a strong service provider of professional services. The company can develop a project brief from a dream that a developer may have. This project brief is then developed into a design concept by our design coordination team and eventually developed through detailed design in all specialist competences including structural design, façade

engineering, building services, intelligent home systems, resource management, and interior finishes including furniture and fixings. We also engage in value engineering exercises that will assure our clients that we maximise on investment value through an opportunity analysis engaging all parties that have developed the design. Our contracts managers together with our project managers will then guide procurement process that are tailor developed to the project at hand. Our site supervisors, design managers and project managers will then lead the project through development and successful completion. Planning, logistics, health and safety form an integral part of this successful execution.

We aim to have QP Management be a catalyst in the regeneration of the construction sector and the development of a sustainable green building industry TEU: What can you tell me about Sustainable Construction Systems? DX: Well, this question lies close to my heart. Gone are the days when we can simply design and build projects using dated construction systems and materials that are not sensitive to the need for equilibrium established by nature. The international community has improved its motivation to address this shortcoming. Sustainable development is one which simply meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. Sustainable construction is merely the need to find a balance between social, economic and environmental factors in the design, construction and use of buildings. At QP Management we have invested in sustainable design techniques leading to BREEAM and LEED building certifications and have successfully executed such techniques on significant projects. We also promote and support contracting agencies that conduct activities that enable construction details and management leading to these significant targets. TEU: How would you describe your management style? DX: I would describe myself as a target driven consistent individual. Solid principles and ethics are considered to be essential ingredients to a successful organisation and these are the values we embrace. My motivation is to work in an organisation

that is passionate and with a serious craving to learn and discover new developments in our field while charged by improved technologies and innovation. My role is that of being a catalyst for adaptation and reorganisation where necessary in order to assure the right infrastructure that will enable QP management to address new challenges, demands, expectations and objectives. This is an ongoing exercise. QP Management is lucky to be made up of seriously motivated and passionate professional colleagues and this is the secret of our success. Our people are our strength. TEU: What’s QP Management‘s greatest challenge (apart from regulations)? DX: As QP Management grows and further develops into new territories all around the world, we need to ensure and maintain consistent quality standards in all of our operations no matter what country or region we are working in. Our brand is very important to us and our objective is to maintain our current high standards of design and project management. This is our challenge. In order to face the future, we need to remain focussed on our intrinsic values and strengths while sensitive to the interesting challenges offered by our customers and partners. We remain committed to invest in our people, develop our infrastructure and reorganise ourselves whenever this is necessary to be on top of our actions and this will enable us to take up new challenges. TEU

All Rights Reserved

Editor’s Note Graduated in Architecture and Civil Engineering in 1991 and then in Structural Engineering in 1993. He led an architectural professional practice, David Xuereb & Associates which has been integrated in QP Management Ltd. in July 2012. His technical experience varies widely. His interest started in architecture, with emphasis on structural design and specialisation in structural steel design including temporary structures. His career then focused on specialised material science, and has lately been very active in the field of energy performance of buildings, sustainable design and building practices and the green building industry. The nature of his responsibilities moved him to implement technical and operational management of the teams he led in his career. He is active on the Building Industry Consultative and Executive Councils, the Climate Change Consultative Council and the Malta Chamber of Commerce. He is also a Trustee of the Conservatorio Vincenzo Bugeja. David has lectured and provided presentations and papers in various institutions and universities in all areas of interest with particular emphasis on resource efficiency, conservation and sustainability in the field of the built environment.

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Corporate payments

EntroPay BusinEss: PaymEnts tailor-madE for small ComPaniEs A payments suite that gives business control and flexibility when making payments

Ixaris, provider of innovative global payments solutions, today launches EntroPay Business, a one-stop shop for the payments needs of small companies. After the success of its consumer payments solution, Ixaris designed a suite of payments solutions specifically for smaller businesses, which typically lack agile, cost-effective payments offerings. EntroPay Business users can enjoy greater control, efficiency savings and lower costs compared to traditional payments methods. EntroPay Business makes use of virtual prepaid cards under the Visa and MasterCard® card schemes, meaning they are widely accepted anywhere in the world unlike other online payments products such as PayPal. Two payments solutions are currently being offered within the EntroPay Business suite:

EntroPay Payout empowers businesses to instantly and cost-effectively send money to anyone, anywhere in the world, who has an email address. The solution is perfect for businesses which need to make small payments to casual workers, or international payments to employees or customers. Firms in sectors such as catering, event management, construction, oil & gas, and film often need to make small payments to occasional workers. Payments via cash or bank transfer can be impossible, inconvenient or expensive. With EntroPay Payout there are no restrictions on the amount that can be sent, making it the perfect solution. Moreover, unlike traditional payments methods, funds are instantly deposited to the recipient’s account allowing them to start spending their hard earned money immediately! 38 |

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EntroPay Purchasing gives small businesses control over their corporate spending by allowing them to create and manage multiple virtual MasterCard cards in a single account. Small businesses typically rely on corporate credit cards for their online expenses. In most cases these purchases are made using the same card, thus creating a reconciliation nightmare for the finance department. Moreover, corporate credit cards present an internal fraud risk since employees have access to the company’s credit line. With EntroPay Purchasing, users can create different cards for different departments and even set limits on the cards given to employees to limit risk exposure. With no credit checks, extra costs, or administrative delays, EntroPay Purchasing offers a simple, instant and globally recognised virtual card solution specifically designed for online transactions.

Mark Anthony Spiteri, EntroPay Product Manager at Ixaris, comments: “Corporates and consumers already enjoy online payments products suited to their needs. However, small and medium-sized businesses have so far lacked flexible and cost effective payments solutions which address their pain points. We created EntroPay Business to be a one-stop shop for the payments needs of small businesses so that they can enjoy control, lower costs and time. “At Ixaris we are dedicated to finding agile, low cost payments solutions for different markets. We were the first to introduce a virtual prepaid Visa card in Europe with EntroPay Consumer. We then developed Ixaris Solutions to address the diverse payments needs of corporates. Now we are simplifying payments for smaller businesses with EntroPay Business.” TEU


COrPOrATE PAyMENTs

EntroPay BusinEss: simPlE. instant. GloBal Editor’s Note Ixaris EntroPay Business clients simply need to fill in one simple form and instantly they get access to the suite of products allowing to make payments to third parties and creating MasterCard virtual cards to manage their expenses.

Ixaris develops innovative global payments applications based on open-loop (Visa and MasterCard) prepaid card schemes. Headquartered in London, Ixaris has technology and customer operations divisions in Malta. Ixaris is a privately-held company funded by leading UK institutional investors. www.ixaris.com

EntroPay Business EntroPay Business is a one-stop shop for the payments needs of small companies. The suite offers proven solutions for businesses that need make instant, low-cost online payments to anywhere in the world. EntroPay Business is operated by Ixaris Systems Ltd. Ixaris MasterCard cards are issued by Bank of Valletta, Transact Payments Limited and IDT Financial Services Ltd., pursuant to licence by MasterCard International Incorporated. MasterCard is a registered trademark of MasterCard International Incorporated business.entropay.com For Enquiries, please contact us on info@business.entropay.com

EntroPay Business provides a real-time, simple to use interface that allows users to keep on top of their finances. A user can generate multiple cards at a click of a button with no waiting time!

May 2014 | THE ECONOMIC UPDATE

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Tax News

Deloitte Malta wins ‘Malta tax FirM oF the Year 2014’ On 21 May 2014, Deloitte Malta was awarded ‘Malta Tax Firm Of The Year 2014’ by the International Tax Review during the 10th European Tax Awards dinner held at the Dorchester Hotel in London. Chris Curmi collected the award on behalf of the firm. Malcolm Booker, CEO of Deloitte Malta said ‘We are very pleased to have won this award as it reaffirms our position as Malta’s leading tax practice which is internationally recognised for its excellence. This is the third time that Deloitte Malta has won this award.’

Director Chris Curmi collecting the award on behalf of Deloitte Malta

Deloitte was nominated for the national tax firm of the year awards in 21 of the 27 European jurisdictions included at the event. Deloitte won the national tax firm of the year awards for Malta, Central and Eastern Europe (Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Romania, Slovak Republic, and Slovenia), Cyprus, Spain, Switzerland, and Turkey. For the national transfer pricing firm of the year awards, Deloitte had 20 nominations out of 25. It won national transfer pricing firm of the year awards in Austria, the Baltic States, Belgium, Luxembourg, Poland, Sweden, and Switzerland. In addition, Deloitte also won the ‘European Financial Services Tax Deal Of The Year 2014’ and ‘European Banking Tax Deal Of The Year 2014’. During the last year Deloitte Malta has continued to innovate and contribute to Malta’s development as a jurisdiction in an increasingly sophisticated tax environment. Among recent innovations in 2013, Deloitte Malta set up a Malta tax desk in New York, launched the Deloitte Malta Tax Bundle Online, developed a short video entitled ‘Malta - Ready for business’, and visited over 46 cities to promote Malta as a business location. The Malta tax practice of around 70 40 |

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professionals also includes individuals from 7 different countries that give an insight into the nuances of cross-border transactions with their home country. The tax practice is led by Marc Alden who commented ‘Our growth and success allows us to offer interesting careers in tax to young lawyers and accountants and we encourage those with a potential interest in this area to visit our website to find out more about our graduate, LLB, LLD, ACCA and ACA programmes.’ Deloitte member firms offer clients a broad range of integrated tax services. Their approach combines insight and innovation from multiple disciplines with business and industry knowledge to help companies excel globally. Deloitte member firms are part of a global network that includes approximately 28,000 member firm tax partners and professionals worldwide. Deloitte member firms operate in a flexible and collaborative manner that allows clients to choose a level of support and the access to recognized experts that is relevant for them locally, regionally, or globally. Clients benefit from the global reach of the worldwide Deloitte network, while retaining access to local tax knowledge when and

where they need it. This facilitates enhanced relations with revenue authorities, and fast responses to regulatory changes, with the support of tax providers with a deep understanding of the issues and the environments in which they operate. TEU

About Deloitte Deloitte refers to one or more of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited, a UK private company limited by guarantee (“DTTL”), its network of member firms, and their related entities. DTTL and each of its member firms are legally separate and independent entities. DTTL (also referred to as “Deloitte Global”) does not provide services to clients. Please see www.deloitte. com/mt/about for a more detailed description of DTTL and its member firms. Deloitte Malta refers to a civil partnership, constituted between limited liability companies, and its affiliated operating entities; Deloitte Services Limited, Deloitte Legal, Deloitte Technology Solutions Limited and Deloitte Audit Limited. The latter is authorised to provide audit services in Malta in terms of the Accountancy Profession Act. A list of the corporate partners, as well as the principals authorised to sign reports on behalf of the firm, is available at www.deloitte.com/mt/about. Deloitte provides audit, tax, consulting, and financial advisory services to public and private clients spanning multiple industries. With a globally connected network of member firms in more than 150 countries and territories, Deloitte brings world-class capabilities and high-quality service to clients, delivering the insights they need to address their most complex business challenges. Deloitte’s more than 200,000 professionals are committed to becoming the standard of excellence.


Oil & Gas

Oil rig spuds explOratOry well sOuth Of Malta The Noble Paul Romano deep water semisubmersible drilling rig has spudded an oil exploration well south of Malta. The well, called Hagar Qim-1, is being drilled in Block 7 of Area 4 off Malta, and is targeting 109 MMboe in Lower Eocene and Paleocene sands. The exploration is being made by Phoencia Energy Co, a subsidiary of Genel Oil. Total depth of 450m is expected to be reached in two to three months. Hagar Qim-1 is the 11th well to be drilled offshore Malta and is the first exploration well since 2002. Sources: Times / Malta Independent TEU

Welcome to Europe’s fastest growing Oil and Gas education hub In partnership with internationally renowned individuals and organisations, Global College Malta, a cutting edge institution of higher education based at SmartCity, is flying in some of the world’s leading industry experts to deliver a unique range of specialist oil and gas short courses and degree programs.

• Be part of Malta’s most vibrant international business community. • Learn from the best. • Make your vision reality, this September – at Global College Malta. MSc Oil and Gas Engineering MSc Drilling and Well Engineering delivered by Robert Gordon University

Specialist oil and gas short courses (3 days) delivered by world-renowned industry experts In partnership with PetroMall

To find out more about Global College Malta, our full range of degree programmes and specialist short courses, visit our website at: www.gcmalta.com or contact: 21801252. Global College Malta, SmartCity Malta, SCM1001.

May 2013 | THE ECONOMiC UPDaTE

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Malta-Russia Relations

A Step forwArd in MAltA-ruSSiA buSineSS relAtionShipS

Recently a delegation from the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Russian Federation (CCIR) arrived in Malta, together with the President of CCIR Mr. Sergei Katyrin and the Heads of several regional chambers.

The delegation held several meetings with the Minister of Foreign Affairs Dr. George Vella and the Minister for the Economy, Investment and Small Business Dr. Chris Cordona as well as with other Maltese entities: Malta Enterprise, Malta Tourism Authority, Finance Malta, and Transport Malta. A memorandum of understanding was signed between the Russian and Maltese Chambers of Commerce and Industry and is intended to pave the way for the development and enhancement of international trade ties. The signing ceremony was followed by the official inauguration of the honorary Representative of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Malta whose role will be to facilitate the collaboration of businesses in the respective countries. In fact the CCIR promotes the growth of the Russian economy and its integration into the world economic system and provides favorable conditions for

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the advancement of all business sectors. The Executive Director of U-Group (Malta) Ltd, Anastasia Budykho has been appointed Malta’s representative for the Russian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CCIR). The CCIR is a non-governmental and nonprofit organization a member of the World Chambers Federation, the Association of European Chambers of Commerce and Industry (Eurochambers), amongst others. One of its objectives is to foster good business practices and encourage business growth and represents the interests of small, medium and big business and encompasses all business sectors – manufacturing, domestic and foreign trade, agriculture, the finance system and services. The presence of the CCI in Malta augurs well for the enhancement of business between Russia and Malta. TEU

www.tpprf-mt.eu


Responsible, Responsive, Reputable. Lotteries and Gaming Authority www.lga.org.mt Suite 1, Level 3, TG Complex, Brewery Street, Mriehel, Birkirkara BKR 3000, Malta Tel: (+356) 2131 6590 • Fax: (+356) 2144 6950 E-mail: info@lga.org.mt


RMB Business DevelopMent, euRope

HSBC Malta uniquely poSitioned to offer trading witH CHina in renMinBi - How to benefit from a liberalising CHina

HSBC Head of RMB Business Development, Europe, Global Banking & Markets, Ms Rongrong Huo during an HSBC Business Breakfast at Hilton Malta addressing the rising aspiration for trade in RMB

As trade opportunities between Malta and China are growing, HSBC Bank Malta is uniquely positioned as the first bank in Malta to offer the facility of trading with China through direct Trade Settlements in the Renminbi (RMB) currency, offering Maltese businesses a distinct trade advantage and helping financial institutions understand the RMB investment opportunities.

This was stated by HSBC’s Head of RMB Business Development, Europe, Global Banking & Markets, Rongrong Huo, at the latest HSBC Malta Business Breakfast entitled “RMB: Supporting rising ambition”. HSBC’s Rongrong Huo is responsible for shaping the Banks’ RMB strategy and driving client execution across HSBC’s global capital financing. She said that China continues on its path towards greater economic liberalisation, new opportunities and benefits for global trade in China’s renminbi (RMB) are arising. Moreover, by internationalising RMB through offshore financial markets, China is achieving new levels of openness and transparency while continuing to relax rules over its home market and making further actions towards RMB full convertibility under capital account. China is not just the global trade dominator. It is now the third biggest global investor behind the US and Japan, with outbound investment growing at an average of 35 per cent between 2005 and 2012. By 2017, China is set to become a net investor in the world, after the US. The world stands to gain from Chinese capital in the coming years. 44 |

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Among the topics covered during her presentation, Ms Huo explored the various benefits for global business arising from liberalised China, the new potential arising from China’s internationalisation progress and the rising importance of RMB in this process. Important trends for corporate and financial institutions were also discussed with a vision for future business development. She also emphasised the importance of China’s globalisation and the rise of the RMB concept, which might be at its early stages for countries like Malta in terms of positioning themselves so as to capture two way strategic flows via trade and investment. HSBC Malta Chief Executive Office Mark Watkinson said: “There can be no doubting the rising importance of Chinese currency in the global economy. In 2009, RMB was a little known currency but in the following four years, it grew to account for 8% of world trade and its growth continues.” “As the leading international bank for RMB business, HSBC is well placed to support businesses looking to be a part of this growth. Coupled with HSBC’s €50 million “Malta Trade for Growth” Fund, this makes

business trade between Malta and China more attractive, straightforward, and advantageous,” said Mr Watkinson. HSBC Malta Head of Global Banking & Markets James Woodeson gave a brief overview of the economy in Malta with fresh perspectives on how businesses in Malta can be a part of this growth. Chev. Maurice Mizzi gave a short talk on trading with China, and in his closing speech, HSBC Malta’s Head of Commercial Banking Michel Cordina emphasised how these thought leadership sessions that are organised by HSBC subject experts can support local businesses to grow and help the Maltese economy to prosper. The growing use of China’s currency worldwide is creating new trade, capital investment and financing opportunities for companies doing business with or in the mainland. Benefits for corporates of using RMB may include improving working capital, simplifying processes and mitigating payment risks. Pilot schemes such as Shanghai Free Trade Zones could represent many potential opportunities for both Corporate and FI clients. TEU



FUND MANAGEMENT

A Fund thAt is A mAnAged portFolio in itselF By John Bellamy

The Vilhena Global Balanced Multi Manager Fund was launched in February of this year. The Fund blends a broad range of collective investments, both active and passive, to create a highly diversified exposure to cash, bonds and equities. The objective of the fund is to maximise the total return, capital and income, to investors over the longer term, whilst minimising the volatility. The strategic asset allocation comprises 60% global fixed income and 40% global equities. Globally, bond markets have been in a bull phase for the best part of 30 years. Whilst we are not predicting an imminent reversal of this we do think it is prudent to add some asset class diversification that can reduce the risk and enhance the return. If we accept that it is likely that the capital returns from bonds, in the short and medium term, are likely to be flat at best investors would do well to seek an alternative solution to achieve the growth that will be necessary to protect them against the longer term inflationary threat. The key benefit of the multi manager approach is that for every part of the portfolio a specialist manager can be employed. Within fixed income for example we don’t feel that it is reasonable to expect any one individual or company to be the best at European sovereign debt, US high yield and emerging

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market debt. Our process aims to identify active managers that focus on smaller parts of the market as we believe this will give them an ‘edge’ against the generalists. If we wish to access a specific asset class but are not able to identify a manager that we are confident can add value on a risk or return basis we will use passives. This will also help us to keep the overall expense of the portfolio to an absolute minimum. Editor’s Note The opinions expressed herein should not be interpreted as investment advice. Investments should be based on the full details of the Prospectus and Key Investor Information Document which may be obtained from BOV plc Branches /Investment Centres and other Licensed Financial Intermediaries. VFM is licensed to provide Investment Services in Malta by the MFSA. The Vilhena Funds SICAV plc is licensed by the MFSA and qualifies as a UCITS. Issued by VFM, TG Complex, Suite 2, Level 3, Triq il-Birrerija, L-Imriehel BKR 3000 Malta.Tel: (356) 21227311, Fax: (356) 22755661,Email: infovfm@bov.com, Website: www.vfm.com.mt


INVESTMENT SOLUTIONS INVESTMENT SOLUTIONS incoMe & Growth INVESTMENT SOLUTIONS

Vilhena Global Balanced Vilhena Multi-Manager Fund Vilhena Global Global Balanced Balanced Multi-Manager Fund The Vilhena Global Balanced Multi-Manager Fund is designed to provide Multi-Manager Fund a diversified and well balanced global exposure across a broad range of Vilhena Balanced collective investmentGlobal schemes which invest in cash, bonds and/or equities. The Vilhena Global Balanced Multi-Manager Fund is designed to provide This Fund, through a Multi-Manager approach, gives investors to access to The Vilhena Global Balanced Multi-Manager Fund is designed provide a diversified and well balanced global exposure across a broad range of a selection of leading fund managers and to a wide array of investments, Multi-Manager Fund a diversified and wellschemes balancedwhich global exposure across a and/or broad range of collective investment invest in cash, bonds equities. which are investment actively managed to provide a realistic prospect capitalequities. growth collective schemes which invest in cash, bondsofand/or This Fund, through a Multi-Manager approach, gives investors access to and income over thealonger term. This Fund, through Multi-Manager approach, givesarray investors access to a selection leading fund managers and to a wide of investments, The Vilhenaof Global Balanced Multi-Manager Fund isarray designed to provide a selection of leading fund managers and to a wide investments, which are actively managed to provide a realistic prospect ofofcapital growth a diversified and well balanced globalaexposure across aofbroad of which are actively managed provide realistic prospect capitalrange growth and income over the longer to term. collective investment which invest in cash, bonds and/or equities. and income over the schemes longer term. This Fund, through a Multi-Manager approach, gives investors access to vilhena Global balanced a selection of leading fund managers and to a wide array of investments, Multi-ManaGer Fund which are actively managed to provide a realistic prospect of capital growth and income Global over the longer term. vilhena balanced

vilhena Global balanced 80072344 i www.vfm.com.mt Multi-ManaGer Fund Multi-ManaGer Fund BOV Branches/Investment Centres & Licensed Financial Intermediaries

80072344 i www.vfm.com.mt 80072344 i www.vfm.com.mt BOV Branches/Investment Centres Financial Intermediaries vilhena balanced *The income thatGlobal the assets of the Fund generate&inLicensed relation to their value or market, and the frequency of payment may vary and are not guaranteed. The value of the investment BOV Branches/Investment Centres & Licensed Financial Intermediaries can go down as well as up and Fund any initial charges and exit fees may lower the amount invested and the amount received upon redemptions. Investments should be based on the Multi-ManaGer

full details of the Prospectus, Fund Supplement and the KIID which may be obtained from Valletta Fund Management Limited (“VFM”), Bank of Valletta plc Branches/Investment *The income that the assets Financial of the Fund generate in relation their value or market, and theServices frequency of payment varyThe andVilhena are notFunds guaranteed. Theisvalue of thebyinvestment Centres and other Licensed Intermediaries. VFM is to licensed to provide Investment in Malta by themay MFSA. SICAV plc licensed the MFSA *The income thewww.vfm.com.mt assets of the Fund generate inand relation to their value orthemarket, and the frequency payment may vary and are not guaranteed. The should value ofbethe investment can down that as as upIssued and any exit fees lower amount invested andBKR the of amount received redemptions. Investments based on the 80072344 and go qualifies as well aiUCITS. byinitial VFM,charges TG Complex, Suite 2,may Level 3, Brewery Street, Mriehel 3000, Malta. Tel:upon 21227311, Fax: 22755661, Email: infovfm@bov.com, candetails go Branches/Investment down as well as up andFund any initial charges fees may lowerbethe amountfrom invested andFund the amount received upon(“VFM”), redemptions. should be based on the full of the Prospectus, and theexit KIID which may obtained Valletta Management Limited Bank Investments of Valletta plc Branches/Investment BOV Centres &and Licensed Financial Intermediaries Website: www.vfm.com.mt. Source:Supplement VFM full details the Prospectus, Fund Supplement and the which may be obtained from Valletta Fund Management Limited Valletta Branches/Investment Centres andofother Licensed Financial Intermediaries. VFMKIID is licensed to provide Investment Services in Malta by the MFSA. The(“VFM”), Vilhena Bank FundsofSICAV plcplc is licensed by the MFSA Centres and other Financial Intermediaries. VFMSuite is licensed Investment Services in Malta the MFSA. The VilhenaFax: Funds SICAV plcEmail: is licensed by the MFSA and qualifies as a Licensed UCITS. Issued by VFM, TG Complex, 2, Levelto3,provide Brewery Street, Mriehel BKR 3000,byMalta. Tel: 21227311, 22755661, infovfm@bov.com, and qualifies as a UCITS. Issued by VFM, TG Complex, Suite 2, Level 3, Brewery Street, Mriehel BKR 3000, Malta. Tel: 21227311, Fax: 22755661, Email: infovfm@bov.com, Website: www.vfm.com.mt. Source: VFM *The income that the assets of the Fund generate in relation to their value or market, and the frequency of payment may vary and are not guaranteed. The value of the investment Website: www.vfm.com.mt. Source: VFM can go down as well as up and any initial charges and exit fees may lower the amount invested and the amount received upon redemptions. Investments should be based on the full details of the Prospectus, Fund Supplement and the KIID which may be obtained from Valletta Fund Management Limited (“VFM”), Bank of Valletta plc Branches/Investment


banking

InternatIonal Factors Group select Malta For theIr annual MeetInG The International Factors Group (IFG) has chosen Malta for its 52nd Annual Meeting, which will be held between the 28th September and 1st October 2014. The IFG, which has over 160 members located in 60 different countries, is the international trade association that represents and promotes the interests of the factoring, invoice financing and asset based lending industry globally. It is headquartered in Brussels, Belgium and has been bringing together like-minded organisations from all over the world since 1963. Its global network facilitates trade, provides education, knowledge sharing as well as the promotion and adoption of best practices. The IFG annual meeting is the leading global conference for factoring, receivables financing and asset-based finance and is regarded by the market as an annual highlight, offering an unrivalled opportunity for decision makers to network, learn, discuss and develop new business relationships. The opening speech for this year’s meeting will be delivered by Malta’s Minister of Finance Prof. Edward Scicluna. The Chairman of IFG, Margrith Lutschg-Emmenegger, who is also President of Malta-based FIMBank plc, stated that “This is IFG’s 52nd annual meeting and we are pleased to present a speaker lineup of the highest international caliber. These will touch on topics such

FIMBank to orGanIse InternatIonal coMplIance conFerence

as receivables finance in 2020, new electronic trade platforms for factoring, anti-money laundering and Basel III”. Lutschg-Emmenegger explained that factoring remained the fastest growing trade finance product globally: “Growth in cross-border factoring has been driven by the continued growth in open account trade, especially used by suppliers in the developing world, and prompted by major retailers and importers in the developed world, as factoring has also become an acceptable alternative to traditional Letters of Credit. Central bankers and regulators have come to appreciate the product as a safe and secure way to finance trade, while governments and policy makers acknowledge the invaluable role factoring plays in financing SMEs”. The IFG Chairman also said that she was “particularly thrilled that this event will be held in Malta. I am certain that the delegates will find these islands unique and will come away with a memorable experience”. On his part, IFG Secretary General Erik Timmermans anticipates a “strong response from key industry players, independent companies as well as service providers who all share the same passion about the importance of Receivables Financing”. For further information about the IFG please visit www.ifgroup.com TEU

FIMBank has always played an active role in the training of its correspondent bankers, and in line with this approach, it is currently finalising the programme for this year’s international conference, which will be held in Malta between the 3rd and 6th June. Over 25 delegates from financial institutions forming part of FIMBank’s network of correspondent banks in Africa, Europe, Asia, the Middle East and the Americas are expected to attend the conference. The focus of this year’s event will be compliance and financial crime, and will see local and international speakers delving into the nature of financial crime, including the various types of money laundering, terrorist financing and fraud risks. This conference aims to give delegates a broad overview of compliance and the types of financial crimes that are prevalent in the finance industry in general, with particular emphasis on Trade Based Money Laundering. A broad overview of the US Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) will be provided. Besides providing delegates with a good understanding of how money laundering works, the course aims to equip these with the knowledge and a better understanding of the skills required to combat money laundering, terrorist financing and fraud. Commenting on the conference programme, Michael Davis, Chief Operating Officer at FIMBank, stated that “We have developed a programme targeted at providing conference delegates with a broad overview of how banks can protect themselves against financial loss arising out of fraud and money laundering, as well as reputational damage due to regulatory action undertaken for failing to have proper systems in place.” Referring to the choice of theme for the conference, he explained that “Money laundering damages the reputation of individual financial institutions as well as the credibility of the financial sector as a whole, which itself has a critical role in economic growth. The conference focus will be on the controls that financial institutions should have in place in order to mitigate these risks.” FIMBank President Margrith Lütschg-Emmenegger stated that “The Bank’s success is solidly based on building and maintaining strong interpersonal relationships, and our training programmes and conferences help to consolidate the strong relationships we have with our correspondent banks.” For further information about the ‘Compliance and Financial Crime conference’ please contact FIMBank on +356 21322100 or email fi@fimbank.com. TEU

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Trade Finance Solutions engineered for business success

FIMBank is an international trade finance specialist with an established reputation as a dynamic and customer-driven provider of trade finance solutions. FIMBank is headquartered in Malta and benefits from a growing network of international offices.

fimbank.com

+365 21322100

SINGAPORE Sテグ PAULO NEW YORK MUMBAI MOSCOW MALTA LONDON ISTANBUL DUBAI CAIRO BEIRUT



ICT

Moving with the tiMes - giving your business an online push

By Charlo Callus

Vouchers have been part and parcel of our day to day living for decades. Originating during the World Wars as a result of food scarcity, they progressed as a business tool. For many years, paper vouchers were the staple of company’s marketing plans. Rarely would one go to a supermarket and not pick up a voucher or two. They also appeared in the form of magazines, voucher books and other innovative media.

The internet revolution has radically changed the marketing landscape. Today one rarely finds a business that has not seriously thought about their online presence. Advances in mobile technology and the advent of smart phones and their proliferation has only increased the necessity for businesses to go mobile. Websites, Facebook pages, LinkedIn, twitter – all have contributed to changing the face of the way businesses market their products or services. Experimenting with text, visuals, videos have all contributed to better exposure and thus better marketing. In reality, however as information increases the risk of becoming just another business online is growing. Companies are being forced to reinvent their online marketing strategies in order to become more effective and target the right customers through the right medium. Vodafone has over the years worked on bringing new technologies to make this happen. With an overall obsession with customer satisfaction, Vodafone worldwide has rolled out the best technologies married with a first class network and now the availability of 4G guaranteeing faster and easier internet access and use. Riding on these successes, Vodafone has brought to the market the innovative concept of Vouchercloud which has already changed the face of online marketing. The concept is simple. Vouchers online and in your palm at all times of the day and night. Easy to download and free of

charge, Vouchercloud brings to the consumer an unparalleled customer experience and a unique service to business. With over 300 top of the range business subscribing to Vouchercloud, the service has proved to be a resounding success. Companies have embraced the opportunity to offer customers special offers, discounts and free services at the touch of a button. This online marketing tool is a total shift from the concept of paper vouchers to a much cheaper and hassle-free solution on a customer’s mobile phone. Whilst one can still print out a voucher from the Vouchercloud website, the application on your smartphone is paperless and easy to redeem. Steve Jobs once stated that ‘Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower’. Vouchercloud does exactly this. It is a tool that allows businesses to take a step towards becoming leaders in their area. TEU

Editor’s Note Charlo Callus is the Managing Director & founder of Cloudlabs, the company which runs vouchercloud & SMS Services businesses on behalf of Vodafone. He started his career as an electronics technician, at a local corporation, graduated in IT engineering, proceeded to a managerial role in Strategy & ICT. On joining Vodafone he was responsible for Technology Planning, then commercial where he launched the SMS Advertising services. Today, he manages vouchercloud for Vodafone through his own company. Charlo Callus has a passion for technological innovation and an enthusiasm for getting a job well done. His main interests are digital marketing, telecommunications, automation and history.

May 2014 | THE ECONOMIC UPDATE

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InternatIonal relatIons

THE SWISS CONTRIBUTION

In April 2003, the Council of the European Union authorised the European Commission to negotiate with Switzerland on a financial contribution to reduce economic and social disparities in the enlarged EU. These negotiations led to a Memorandum of Understanding setting out the framework for the allocation of the Swiss Contribution and the sectors to be prioritised. This Memorandum of Understanding between Switzerland and the EU was signed on 26 September 2006.

Malta is a beneficiary of the Swiss Contribution, together with the other member states which joined the EU since 1 May 2004. The Swiss-Maltese Co-operation Programme Immediately after the agreement between Switzerland and the EU, Malta took up contact with the Swiss authorities to initiate discussions on the Bilateral Framework Agreement between Malta and Switzerland. Following meetings held in Malta between the two sides, agreement was reached on a Bilateral Framework concerning the implementation of the Swiss-Maltese Cooperation Programme. The Agreement was signed in December 2007, enabling implementation to commence. The total allocation committed by Switzerland for projects in Malta is CHF 4.694 million (approx. €3.85 million). An individual project approach has been applied to implement two stand-alone projects with a thematic focus on Human and Social Development. The projects are entitled: • Establishing Positron Emission Tomography / Computed Tomography (PET / CT) scanning in the Maltese Islands; and • Support to the Mediterranean Academy of Diplomatic Studies (MEDAC) Current state of implementation of the Swiss-Maltese Cooperation Programme The approval process for the two project proposals was completed in 2010, making Malta one of the first Beneficiary States of the Swiss Contribution to enter the implementation phase. The Swiss-Maltese Cooperation Programme has provided the funding needed to purchase a PET/CT scanner for Mater Dei Hospital. Readily deployable, this equipment has improved 52 |

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Malta’s cancer screening and patient management capabilities. This is the first time the residents of Malta have the benefits of a PET/CT scanner on the National Health Service in their own country. The Oncology Institute of Southern Switzerland (IOSI) in Bellinzona assisted Mater Dei Hospital to elaborate the detailed specifications for the most suitable PET/CT scanner. It has also provided training to the hospital staff in order to ensure that the equipment is used properly. The necessary works and acceptance testing were completed by January 2013, the scanner being ready to be put into clinical use in the first week of February 2013. The PET/CT facility was officially inaugurated by Prime Minister Dr Lawrence Gonzi on 6 February 2013, in the presence of H E Bernardino Regazzoni, Ambassador of the Swiss Confederation to Malta. The Swiss-Maltese Cooperation Programme is also co-financing fifty-eight scholarships over a period of four academic years for prospective diplomats to study at the University of Malta’s Mediterranean Academy of Diplomatic Studies (MEDAC). By helping to train diplomats principally from the Mediterranean region and by establishing an alumni network, cooperation between Mediterranean countries becomes deeper and more intense. TEU

For more information on the Swiss-Maltese Cooperation programme please visit www.swiss-contribution.gov.mt


banking

Banif Bank expands its Branch network in Mosta and paola Banif Bank (Malta) plc has opened new branches in the heart of Mosta and Paola. The new retail outlets are part of a network expansion programme that will enable the Bank to reach out to more clients in their localities, while attracting regional traffic. Offering better facilities and points of sales to customers is foremost on the Bank’s list, and having a wider geographical coverage will contribute further to the high standards of customer care the Bank already enjoys. The attractive Banif Bank branches in Mosta and Paola were officially inaugurated by The Hon Prime Minister Joseph Muscat, and The Hon Prof Edward Scicluna, Minister for Finance, respectively, in the presence of the Bank’s Chairman Dr Michael Frendo, Chief Executive Officer Joaquim F. Silva Pinto, directors, heads of department and the teams who are managing the branches. Acknowledging the significant results and achievements that have

Supported by the Swiss-Maltese Grant

made the Bank what it is today, Mr Silva Pinto said that Banif is a core domestic Maltese bank now vying for a larger share of the local market. The Bank was an impressive accomplishment in a very short time, clearly uplifted by the trust and confidence the public continues to show in the Bank. “We will continue giving our customers the high quality of service they expect, foreseeing their needs and strengthening our relationship with them,” said Mr Silva Pinto. “We will keep exploring how best to improve our product portfolio to their satisfaction, challenged by ever-changing trends and consumption patterns and a highly competitive market. Banif Bank is delivering a resilient business performance and, year in year out, we confirm the Bank has the fundamentals in place for longterm growth and a strong position in the market.” Mr Silva Pinto then thanked the dedicated teams who worked to make both branches happen. TEU

the swiss-maltese co-operation programme 85% funding for pet/ct scanner at mater Dei hospital

72.5% funding for 58 m.Dip scholarships at the mediterranean

academy for Diplomatic studies www.swiss-contribution.gov.mt

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Corporate Funding

The Loan Fund added To MaLTa’s LisT oF possibLe Fund seT-ups Triggered by a number of enquiries relating to the regulation of loan funds in Malta, on 2 April, 2014 the Malta Financial Services Authority (“MFSA”) issued a new set of Investment Services Rules applicable to collective investment schemes investing by means of lending to other entities. Given that lending is a core banking function, the Rules draw on the MFSA Banking Rules in order to address the areas of risk in a manner that ensures consistency with the Banking Act. The Rules essentially answer the question many have been asking themselves: Can a fund give loans? Maltese funds in possession of a collective investment scheme licence structured in terms of these new Rules may now give loans freely to other entities, which is a marked improvement from the previous situation where funds were only permitted to invest in securities or other physical assets. The Rules are currently applicable to Alternative Investor Funds (“AIF”) and Professional Investor Funds (“PIF”). The loan fund can be regarded as both a lender and a borrower. The majority of the loan fund’s assets, (at least 70%), are to be invested ‘through loans’. The remaining 30% may be invested in liquid securities. The Lending Rulebook defines ‘investing through loans’ as covering both: • direct origination of loans by the fund; and • acquiring portfolios of loans or a direct interest in loans that result in a direct legal relationship between the fund as lender on the one hand and the borrower on the other.

Investment and LendIng RestRIctIons The Rules forbid a loan fund or its manager from using leverage, short selling techniques and the re-use of collateral. There are also certain diversification requirements and in fact a loan fund is not allowed to invest more than 10% of its capital in a single undertaking. A loan fund is also prohibited from investing more than 10% of its capital in units or shares of one or several other loan funds (subject to an aggregate limit of 20% in units of such funds) and may not own more than 25% of units of shares of any single loan fund. Cash borrowing for liquidity purposes is permitted, subject to certain restrictions, and may not exceed 30% of the fund’s capital. Cross sub-fund investment is permitted subject to a 25% cap across all sub-funds of the same umbrella fund. Loan funds may lend solely and exclusively to unlisted companies and SMEs; financial undertakings are ineligible to receive financing from a loan fund. Entities which are eligible to receive loans in terms of the Rules are prohibited from transferring any loans so received to a third party. RequIRements foR cLosed ended funds, and the taRget InvestoRs The Rules provide that loan funds are to be constituted as closedended funds with a fixed duration. The Rules allow such fund to exceptionally permit redemptions on an annual basis where the auditors confirm that the fund has excess liquidity. Loan funds may only attract investors that qualify as professional clients under MiFID or who elect to be treated as professional clients and commit to invest at least Euro100,000. seRvIce PRovIdeRs A loan fund is required to appoint a fund manager (unless self-managed), a custodian, an auditor, a compliance officer and a money laundering reporting officer. The fund manager may be a de minimis fund manager licensed in terms of the Investment Services Act (the “Act”), a 54 |

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fund manager authorised in terms of the AIFMD and licensed in terms of the Act, a de minimis fund manager authorised/registered in another member state or a fund manager authorised/licensed in a Recognised Jurisdiction. Irrespective of whether the loan fund is licensed as a PIF or an AIF, the manager (or in the case of a self-managed loan fund, the loan fund itself) will be responsible for portfolio management and risk management of the loan fund or other permitted services. The MFSA requires the fund manager to be in possession of the necessary skills and expertise to ensure that lending decisions are effected properly. The fund manager is also required to establish a credit risk strategy in proportion to the scope and sophistication of the loan fund’s activities. Furthermore, the manager must ensure that the scheme maintains a minimum liquid-asset proportion. A Custodian who is separate and independent from the fund manager must also be appointed for the loan fund. It is worth noting that a custodian is required whether the scheme is licensed either as a PIF or as an AIF.

aIfmd The MFSA’s Rulebook subjects loan funds (or the Alternative Investment Fund Manager) to rules similar to those under the AIFMD even if managed by a de minimis AIFM or a non-EEA AIFM. cRedIt RIsk and LIquIdIty management PoLIcIes Loan funds (or the AIFM) are expected to put in place policies on credit risk, credit provisioning and large exposures in proportion with the sophistication of the loan fund’s activities. Such policies will include a risk appetite statement and address items such as structuring of credit limits and portfolio mix. A liquidity management system and procedures would need to be put in place to monitor liquidity risk of the fund. The launch of these Rules manifests the MFSA’s pro-business approach and its responsive nature. The MFSA will continue to monitor regulatory developments in the loan funds space, keeping the investors’ interests at the forefront at all times. Adding loan funds to the suite of fund offerings that the MFSA has in its Rulebook is a strong signal that the Regulator listens to what the industry has to say and acts accordingly. TEU

Editor’s Note Gabriella Zammit obtained a law degree from the University of Malta in 2005. Prior to joining KPMG Malta, she worked for over five years for a leading law firm specialising in international corporate and commercial matters. Within the Risk Consulting, Advisory Services team at KPMG Malta, Gabriella is heavily involved in assisting clients on issues pertaining to the Maltese corporate, financial services and regulatory framework. Her regulatory work has included a wide range of advisory assignments, including assisting clients with setting up investment funds in Malta and ongoing regulatory advice to several regulated entities on changes to the Regulatory regime, such as AIFMD.


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Project ManageMent

Project ManageMent – Putting change into Practice It Is one of the Important lInks In the economIc chaIn By Vincent Magri The basis of any economy is the transactions that occur in it. Each of these transactions comes from a specific need of each individual party. These specific needs are the result of ideas, and ideas are in turn the result of wanting to do things differently – the need for change. Such ideas are transformed into projects, which can thus be described as the children of active minds that are interacting together to satisfy each other’s needs and hence creating and moving the economy. The economy is based on projects, and each project, whatever its size, needs to be managed. Thus evolves the concept of project management. In today’s world, we all understand that change needs to be managed and controlled. This is where the role of the project manager comes in, a role synonymous with implementing change – a practical role which transforms ideas into projects that are implemented. A project is any type of work which has a start and a finish, where objectives and results are identified at the very start of the process. Objectives are usually very broad in the beginning of the project management process and these are then refined and developed further, leading to the defined expected results and outcomes. Every project starts from one person’s idea, but very rapidly develops through the input of a vast array of people from different backgrounds, with a vast array of specialised knowledge. We usually call them professionals. Professionals are those breed that are specialised in their subject and who have a big “know it all” tag on their forehead related to that subject. That is actually the reason why they are engaged. Of course, projects do not only include professionals, but the latter are worth a particular mention. The problem starts when the views of such professionals cross paths along the way in their aim to achieve the common results defined for the project. Secondly, the matter is further complicated since from beginning to end any project involves a sequence of processes. The sequencing of such processes in extremely important since it will affect the efficiency and effectiveness of attaining results. Decisions need to be taken as to which processes are carried out in series or in parallel, and which are critical at any point in time. Mix the above needs together, and the result is a very complicated situation. Both the input of the various people and also the processes involved need to be intertwined together in time, and need to be coordinated effectively. If this is not done, the risk of not attaining the desired results is substantially increased. This is where the appointment of a project manager for any project, becomes essential to the project itself. The project manager is that person who adopts the project, coordinates between all stakeholders, manages the process and leads it to eventual completion. The project itself can vary in complexity, from the simplest task to the most complicated mission. They are all considered as projects that must be started and finished. The project management aspect needs dedicated resources and can be dealt with by existing resources if it is a small project, but needs to be professionally managed by a dedicated project manager if it goes beyond a certain size and degree of complexity. The larger the complexity, the more the need for a project management team, which for very large projects, usually assumes the size of a temporary organisation in itself. 56 |

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Basic project management involves three very important variables which need to be continuously monitored and controlled, as necessary. Importance at any point in time depends on the actual situation of the project and hence the project manager, based on his or her experience and on feedback given by the client, has to decide which one of the three assumes the highest priority at any specific point in time. These three variables relate to quality, time and resources (financial and other), and are all essential in satisfying and attaining the expected results. Practice shows us that certain attitudes towards projects become automatically adopted throughout the lifetime of the project. The level of desired quality is usually established at the very beginning, since this then leads to the establishment of the other parameters, especially as related to resources, both human resources and financial ones. Budgetary considerations intrinsically depend on expected and desired levels of quality. The time element is equally important and realistic estimates need to be made so as to determine the delivery dates. For many projects, time is a non-negotiable parameter and failure to reach agreed deadlines usually results in enormous financial impacts. Because of this reason, and especially towards the end of the project delivery, time usually assumes much larger importance and extreme care needs to be taken to reduce the negative impact that such importance will have on quality and costs. The role of the Client is extremely important in this respect. Especially as related to construction projects which usually span over a number of years from start to completion, Client requirements usually change along the way resulting in expensive changes to the project and can compromise completion dates. Such effects multiply substantially if changes are requested towards the end of the project. As one might realise, project management is a complex activity and not suitably and ably carried out by anyone. It is one of the most stressful activities that one can engage in since it is all about conflict resolution and managing change to deliver results. Change is challenging. Creating the need for change is innovative. Bringing about that change is a rewarding experience for the right people. It is called project management. TEU

Editor’s Note VINCENT MAGRI has been involved in the management of projects for the past 24 years and has worked in planning, management, construction, refurbishment and European Union projects both locally and abroad. Employed with the Foundation for Medical Services, he is the Client Representative and Project Manager for the new Oncology Centre project at Msida.



european funding

EuropEan funding opportunitiEs for collaborations with north africa By Anamaria Magri Pantea

Malta’s geo-strategic position in the Mediterranean, our long-standing tradition of good relations with North African countries, together with our cultural affinities both to them as well as to continental Europe, have indeed given us the opportunity to act as a bridge and facilitator for collaborations and exchanges between these two large markets.

This was once again evident in the large audience gathered by the recent B2B networking event focused on Malta - Tunisia - Libya business relations. The huge potential of the emerging markets and strong development needs that these countries and their neighbours represent is attracting keen interest from both indigenous Maltese organisations as well as the international ones setting-up and using Malta as a stepping stone to the Continent. There is definitely a huge demand for investments in these countries, from various sorts of infrastructure, technology transfer to human resources training, business community development and provision of consumer goods. And we – Malta, Europe – are well placed to provide such, not just geographically but also in terms of abilities. One issue sticks out 58 |

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like a sore thumb however – the challenge of access to finance. Whilst we are slowly recovering from the recent economic crisis, accessing finance - particularly for investments or trade in regions still relatively unstable, is not easy. The political risk is typically translating into a financial risk and as such private capital is not flowing smoothly. This is where the international institutions’ intervention comes into play, making available various financing support programmes to encourage and facilitate the transformation of numerous collaboration ideas and opportunities into common projects and joint ventures that will ultimately lead to socioeconomic stability, development and growth in North Africa. As a clearly interested neighbour in this sense, the European


EUrOPEAN fUNDINg

Union is structuring and allocating various financial instruments - grants, loans and guarantees, equity – aimed to act as a conduit for attracting and leveraging further private capital. This is being done in the context of the Union of the Mediterranean focused on promoting economic integration and democratic reform across the 15 members neighbouring the EU at the south and eastern part of the Mediterranean, namely: Albania, Algeria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Mauritania, Monaco, Montenegro, Morocco, Palestine, Tunisia and Turkey, with Syria being currently suspended and Libya having an observer status. The different strands of the European Neighbourhood Policy - trade and economic development between the two blocs, the need for political reform, advancing the peace process and increasing regional security (particularly controlling migration), are being implemented through various programmes supported by the European Neighbourhood and Partnership Instrument.

Collaborative projects can now benefit of up to 100% EU funding for research and innovation or coordination and support actions Particularly relevant to highlight are its contributions to the Neighbourhood Investment Facility (NIF), the Erasmus+ and the Cross-Border Cooperation in the Med Programme. The NIF assistance for the Mediterranean partners (Libya also soon to be covered) is being provided to create an investmentfriendly environment by kick-starting key infrastructure improvements in sectors like: •

Energy: power generation, transmission and distribution, renewable energies

Transport and telecoms: airports, air transport, roads and motorways, bridges, railways, telecoms

Environment: water and sanitation, solid waste disposal and treatment, pollution abatement, irrigation

Human and social capital: construction and refurbishment of hospitals, schools, social housing.

Direct support for the private sector is also available, particularly targeting SMEs in tourism, services, but also the industrial sector in general (e.g. cement & steel works, chemical & metallurgical plants, high-tech, automotives, agro-food). The type of support provided can take the form of grants to cover expenditure for technical assistance, interest subsidies, direct or intermediated loans and even direct equity investments, the latter particularly used for strengthening the capital base of productive businesses established in partnership with EU-based companies. The NIF assistance is undertaken by the European Investment Bank working in conjunction with a number of other European Public Finance Institutions like the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, Council of Europe Bank, French Agency of Development, Nordic Investment Bank, Spanish Agency for International Cooperation and Development. Kreditanstalt fur Wiederaufbau, Societa Italiana per le Impresse

all’Estero, and a few others. To benefit from the NIF, a project has to be submitted by one such financial institution. Bearing in mind Malta’s positioning and the strength of its banking and financial sector, it might be opportune to have a Neighbourhood Investment Facility “eligible” bank also in Malta. The Mediterranean neighbouring countries of Algeria, Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Palestine, Syria, Tunisia can also participate as partner countries in the Erasmus+, particularly in its higher education and youth mobility actions. Moreover, these MENA countries have also been Associated Countries to the FP7 Framework Programme, hence being expected to continue their involvement in the current Horizon 2020 Framework Programme for Research & Innovation. This can surely serve as an excellent platform for technology transfer, further product development and innovation across Europe and North Africa. And this not just through the collaborative projects that can now benefit of up to 100% EU funding for research and innovation or coordination and support actions, but also by applying under the brand new instrument aimed at supporting SMEs to develop viable innovative products and services with a truly international commercialisation potential. A significant 70% EU co-financing rate is being offered to such SMEs whilst the budget of such projects is envisaged to be in the order of EUR 1-3 million. Furthermore, a number of European business angel networks and venture capital funds are looking towards increasing their cross-border activities, and Malta could serve as an excellent home jurisdiction. Ofcourse, more needs to be done to improve the framework conditions for the establishment, operation and development of such risk-capital investment services in Malta. However, we definitely have a solid base to work upon, so let’s do it! Let’s deliver on our potential as the stepping stone to North Africa and the bridge to Europe! TEU

Editor’s Note Anamaria Magri Pantea is a specialist in EU funding, innovation management and business development. Holding an Honours Degree in Economics with specialisation in finance and a Master in Business Administration with Distinction, she has over twelve years of experience in projects structuring and funding sourcing, their initiation, coordination, supervision and evaluation. Anamaria has accumulated extensive expertise in EU funding in various roles - facilitating access to, applying for, evaluating requests, managing it and monitoring its implementation - particularly in areas related to innovation, enterprise competitiveness, entrepreneurship, ICT, energy and sustainability. Anamaria previously worked with Malta Investment Management Co. Ltd (MIMCOL), where she managed the Malta National Contact Point for the EU’s Competitiveness and Innovation Programme. She also worked directly with the European Commission within the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) where she supported the development of the first three Knowledge and Innovation Communities - large pioneering projects bringing together in a long-term collaborative framework business, research and education organisations from across Europe to address current societal challenges (e.g. the use of ICT as an enabler, energy sustainability, climate change). For further information please visit www.ascendconsulting.eu

May 2014 | THE ECONOMIC UPDATE

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NEWS FEEDS

air Malta updates policy on use of electronic devices in-flight Keeping your electronic devices switched off during takeoff and landing will soon become a thing of the past as Air Malta embraces a new technological era. Starting from June 1st, Air Malta will be lifting many restrictions relating to the use of portable electronic devices on board its aircraft. Handheld devices, such as tablets, smartphones and e-readers will be allowed to be operated during all phases of the flight as long as they are set to ‘flight mode’ prior to departure. “We are very pleased to announce that we can allow our passengers to use their electronic gadgets during all phases of flight, as long as they are placed in ‘flight mode’ before departure”. This will mark a new era in our in-flight experience, which I am very sure

will go down well with our customers, especially frequent travellers,” said Philip Saunders, Air Malta’s Chief Commercial Officer. Even though devices will have to be set to flight mode and phone calls are still prohibited, passengers are allowed to use their cameras, play video games, listen to music and read their e-Books, making their flight experience more personal. “For example, you can now take photos during your flight, even upon takeoff and landing, and upload them onto our Facebook page www.facebook.com/AirMalta as soon as you land,” said Mr Saunders. Portable electronic devices which transmit or receive communication signals must have a “flight mode” function in order to be used. TEU

Mobile data registers growth on all fronts A quantitative study commissioned earlier this year by the Malta Communications Authority (MCA) shows that 42% of the Maltese population own a smartphone, a growth of 5% when compared to a similar survey carried out in 2013. This increase is reflected in all age groups except in the 65-74yr group, and as expected, the younger age groups lead the way in terms of growth. The study has shown that although 79% of the population is aware that the Internet can be accessed through a mobile phone, 47% of these have never done so. The remaining 52% claim to have used the Internet on their mobile phone sometime during the period preceding the interview, an increase of 4% over 2013. Typically, mobile data users are generally aged between 16 and 34 years and possess a post-secondary level of education or higher. Significant growth has been registered in the number of mobile data users that are subscribing to contract or prepaid plans, which have now reached 72% when compared to the 52% subscribed in 2013. The contract monthly plans are generally preferred by those aged between 35 and 54yrs whilst prepaid plans are more popular with those aged between 16 and 34yrs. Mobile data users are today accessing the Internet for a longer period of time with 25% claiming to use it for at least an hour or more every time, an increase of 15% on 2013. 60 |

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Socialising and sending/receiving emails continue to be the most popular internet activities conducted on a mobile, followed by accessing content via APPs and retrieving information/news. Social media and messaging are still the most accessed applications among mobile data users, followed by content and games. Facebook leads the way as the website mostly visited, closely followed by Google, YouTube and timesofmalta.com. 77% of mobile data users claim to access the Internet on their mobile whilst abroad, an impressive increase of 40% over 2013. However, more than two thirds, do so via WIFI versus 26% who connect via a data plan subscription. 61% of mobile data plan subscribers agree that data service costs are affordable with more than two-thirds agreeing that data service is reliable and that coverage is good. Not having a mobile phone that allows internet access is the main reason why people do not use mobile data services. Interestingly, the perception that one does not need or is not interested in a mobile phone that allows Internet connectivity declined by a significant 31% from 2013. TEU

Access the following link for a presentation on the main findings http://www.mca.org.mt/surveys/mobile-data-usage-survey-2014


SPOTlIgHT: KUNSIll MAlTI gHAll-ISPOrT

Kunsill Malti Ghall-isport our GuidinG Values: inteGrity, transparency, accountability. need to have specific legislation targeting the local sport scene in line with other countries. The previous Malta Sport Council set up in 1995 had been entrusted to gather information and material about Sports Legislation in other countries. Following this exercise and other local contributions, Government was in a position to publish a White Paper. KSM Chairman Dr. Luciano Busuttil together with Dr Ian Borg, MP Parliamentary Secretary for EU and Chris Aguis

The Kunsill Malti għall-iSport is determined to make a difference. The unyielding principles guiding the KMS Board are Integrity, Transparency and Accountability. Irrelevant of any changes in the environment within which the KMS operates, KMS will remain loyal to these values. - Integrity in the way we operate and function. - Transparency and openness in everything we do. - Accountability for all our actions and decisions. Throughout the years, Government has acknowledged the

The KMS vision is targeted towards the: -

In November 2002, following an extensive period of consultations and meetings, including a meeting with representatives from the Council of Europe, Minister Jesmond Mugliett, then Parliamentary Secretary in the Ministry of Education headed by Minister Louis Galea, piloted the Sports Act 2002 in Parliament and this was unanimously approved by Parliament. On 28th January, 2003, the Sports Law was brought into effect. The Sports Law gives the Kunsill Malti għall-iSport (KMS) the responsibility to promote sport, to implement Government Policy on Sport, to register Sport organisations and to establish dispute resolution structures. The KMS is the main public promoter of the health, social and economic benefits generated by sport to society.

development and implementation of policies, programmes and practices aimed at improving access and equity in all aspects of sport;

The KMS objectives as stipulated in the Sports Law promote the adoption of a holistic approach. The objectives may be classified into immediate, medium and long term. The national sports strategy will be addressing the different objectives, which include: -

-

maximisation of available resources for the development of sport.

-

introduction of assistance / incentive schemes for local sport organisations;

-

registration of sport organisations.

The Sports Act communicates a declaration of principles which inspires the Government in its national policies. These are:

To promote and encourage the development of increased participation in Sport in Malta and the improved performance by athletes in Sport.

- To develop and implement programmes that promote equality of access to and participation in Sport -

To promote a culture of excellence in Sport.

-

To ensure the provision of resources, services and facilities for the promotion of Sport in Malta

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To promote a culture of participation in Sport among people, especially children and youths, as an aspect of personal and social development within the context of government policy on education and health.

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Physical Education and Sport: to be taught and practiced in all primary and secondary schools in accordance to the Education Act.

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No Discrimination: ensuring that no one is discriminated against when involved in sport.

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To improve the sporting abilities of the Maltese generally through the improvement in the standard of sport coaches, administrators and officials.

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Recognition: everyone should have the opportunity to participate in sport, irrespective of gender and abilities.

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To foster co-operation in Sport with local and international bodies, entities or other persons for the encouragement and promotion of the development of Sport programmes initiatives and activities

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Fair Play: the Act provides for all participants in sport activities to follow the rules of fair play.

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To ensure that all Sport activities respect the human dignity, health and safety of all participants in sport as well as the rules of fair play and the health and safety of the spectators.

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No Exploitation: controls to ensure that when promoting and providing a service in sport, young people are not exploited.

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To encourage, in furtherance of the principle of subsidiary, non-governmental bodies and private entities or persons and local councils to contribute to the promotion of Sport in Malta.

The KMS, in conjunction with the Malta University Sports Club, have introduced subsidised membership schemes for students attending University, the Institute of Health Care and Junior College. Staff Development and training has always been within the Kunsill Malti għall-iSport policy and commitments. KMS on regular basis organises staff seminars with a variety of topics to enhance staff development on the day to day operations. Regular staff development courses are also organised, including first aid, fire fighting, life guard saving skills, coaching courses, computer courses, management course and teaching skills development. This year heralded the commencement of the Assistance/Incentive Schemes, evaluation and allocation. A considerable number of sports organisations have benefited from these schemes.

The KMS held various meetings with National Sports Organisations and other sports organisations during the year. A total of 327 meetings were held, and a total of 2927 correspondence items were handled through the KMS Head Office. The KMS have been active in the further development of Sports Programmes. The results can be seen in the Sports Programmes Section. KMS Human Resources – Throughout the year the KMS have provided various educational seminars and training courses for management and staff. This is in accordance with the aim of assisting staff in their work, while at the same time, offering sports organisations and the general public the best possible service available. The courses included Fire-Fighting, First Aid, ECDL, ACCA – Health & Safety and Purchasing & Material Management. May 2014 | THE ECONOMIC UPDATE

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NEWSMAKERS

CHEV. MAURICE F. MIZZI REAPPOINTED PRESIDENT OF MIZZI ORGANISATION The Board of Directors of Mizzi Organisation have announced the reappointment of Chev. Maurice F. Mizzi as President of Mizzi Organisation for another term. Chev Mizzi, is the last surviving son of the founder of Mizzi Organisation Spiro Mizzi. Chev Mizzi has played a crucial role in the family business over the past 58 years, helping Mizzi Organisation evolve and shape into the successful, family conglomerate it is today. Fresh out of the University of Malta, Chev Mizzi immediately joined his father’s business in 1957 and was made responsible for the setting up and development of Mizzi Ltd.(now Zanussi Centre). Over the past 4 decades he has also been responsible for and to this day remains CEO for both Continental Cars Ltd, handling renowned automotive brands such as Volkswagen, SEAT, Audi and Porsche, as well as for Titan International Ltd – the engineering arm of Mizzi Organisation, the leaders in air conditioner and lift importation and installation. Chev. Mizzi has had a full career over the years with involvement not only in the family organization but also in a number of government related entities. He was made Chairman of the then parastatal company - Mediterranean Film Studios, as well as Chairman of the Malta Development Corporation in 1997/2000. He served also as director of Maltacom plc (now GO plc) board from 1997 until 2002 and also held the position of Chairman of the European Arab Chamber of Commerce during 2002-2003.

Currently, apart from his primary role as President of Mizzi Organisation, Chev Mizzi is Chairman of Ozone Ltd, President of the Maltese-Chinese Chamber of Commerce, President of the Association of New Car Importers, Consul General of Iceland, and last year has been made a member of the Board of the Council of the University of Malta. Being one of the largest, very successful privately owned organisations in Malta, Mizzi Organisation is a leader in a diversity of sectors which include automotive sales and service, beverage production, distribution and importation, retail, tourism, real estate, schools as well as mechanical and electrical contracting. Furthermore, during the past few years Mizzi Organisation has formed part in various Consortia from a yacht repair centre and a yacht marina as well as a lottery company. Mizzi Organisation is committed to its customers, employees and Malta’s development and continues to build on its core strengths and expand its business portofolio. Mizzi Organisation has 1200 employees and will be celebrating 100 years in business during 2018. TEU

ID- DRITT The Law Students’ Society (Għaqda Studenti tal-Liġi) launched the twentyfourth Volume of its prestigiuos publication Id-Dritt on the 15th of April, under the patronage of Minister for Justice, Culture and Local Government, the Hon. Dr. Owen Bonnici at Auberge de Castille. The first issue of this publication dates back to 1944, a year after Għaqda Studenti tal-Liġi (Għ.S.L.) was set up by Prof. Joseph M Ganado; one of the pioneers of the development and progress of Maltese Law and the Legal Profession.

Photography by Reuben Piscopo

Editor-in-Chief Luana Bezzina, together with vice-editors Amber Attard Kingswell, Kira Borg, Tony Cassar and Raisa Colombo, Publications Officer Gaynor Saliba and Marketing Officer Thea Saliba, have worked to put together this edition of ‘Id-Dritt’. Id-Dritt Volume XXIV features seventeen interesting articles, addressing topics which range from the Remote Gaming Industry in Malta to the Cell Company Structure under Maltese Law. It incorporates articles from different fields of law, including Civil Law, IT Law, Constitutional Law, Tax Law, Shipping Law, Criminal Law, amongst others. This law journal includes articles penned by lawyers and lecturers, and also an article by Ms Daphne Ann Grech- a law student who placed first in Id-Dritt Student Competition. The launch was followed by a legal debate, chaired by Mr Jonathan Attard, which dwelled on the age of criminal responsibility. The Hon. Dr Owen Bonnici, the Hon. Dr Beppe Fenech Adami and Dr Ruth Farrugia formed the panel. TEU

All those wishing to get hold of a copy of this prestigious publication are kindly requested to contact us on publications@ghsl.org.

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Thomas smiTh Group exTend sdV aGency represenTaTion To Libya

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Thomas Smith, agents of SDV Logistics in Malta have now also extended representation in Libya. SDV, a member of the Bolloré Group, is a global leader in supply chain management, offering services including logistics, international transport, customs brokerage, warehousing, distribution, and express courier service. Managing Director, Joe Gerada, says “We are investing in our ability to implement an extensive supply chain solution. SDV is already a strong player within Africa, as part of Bolloré Africa Logistics, and it is indeed a pleasure to announce to Maltese-Libya traders that Thomas Smith can assist their business further by coordinating all sub-agents’ and clients’ logistical operations”. Thomas Smith has been active as logistics provider and also as port agent in Libyan ports, and continues to be, supporting Malta’s role as a logistics hub in the Mediterranean. Thomas Smith Logistics Manager, Ramon Azzopardi, added that post revolution, the organisation took the initiative to engage a Maltese permanent representative in Libya from its own work force, coordinating and monitoring cargo at destination. SDV ranks among the world’s top 10 in transport and logistics companies, and has a track record of being a high performer with an environmentally responsible approach. The company offers services to industries such as Oil & Gas, Aerospace, Healthcare, Cosmetics and Perfumes, Fashion, Telecom and High Tech. With its headquarters in Paris, France – within Charles de Gaulle Airport’s cargo operation base – the company runs a global network of 540 agencies and employs 32,000 professionals worldwide in 93 countries. SDV services global accounts such as General Electric. TEU

If you would like to find out how Thomas Smith can assist you in Libya, email libya@tcsmith.com or contact us on 2205 8134. Thomas Smith is a group of companies offering a diversified portfolio of services in international shipping and logistics - with operations in Malta, Libya, Algeria and Tunisia - and insurance.

Fifteen months after opening, Fratelli La Bufala at Tigné Point, Sliema, was judged as one of the best family-oriented casual- dining restaurants in Malta at the WRMC – Malta Restaurants Awards 2014. Fratelli la Bufala in Malta, and around the world, has one simple concept – a love for simple food and tradition, nothing too gastronomical and nothing one would not cook at home. Fratelli takes extra care when choosing its ingredients, such as the signature mozzarella di bufala DOP from the Campania region, which it imports twice a week, and the bufala ricotta, which is the main ingredient used for an array of homemade desserts. The heart and soul of the restaurant, however, is its classic Neapolitan pizza. TEU

For more information, visit Fratelli La Bufala Malta on Facebook or call 21387888

FLexiFiT: now in your oFFice! Studies have shown improved posture at work, result in employees alert for longer and happier at work – a fact that many large companies figured out long ago. However, age, excess weight, injuries and medical issues discourage employees to start – and keep – exercising. This is where FlexiFit is a leader amongst peers offering fitness programs your employees are more likely to stick to. Exercises are graded and ideal for people with back and knee problems including sciatica and slip discs, middle aged and the elderly. Exercises are based on functional movements such as standing tall, strengthening areas which are directly linked to office performance. This is recommended by doctors and physiotherapists as it greatly reduces, back pain and repetitive strain injuries. FlexiFit classes are a positive approach to team building while improving personal fitness. TEU

For more information call 99490896, email plethoradance@gmail.com, visit our website www. danceclassesmalta.com or like PlethoraDance on Facebook.

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Helping you cope with Regulatory Change Complexity and change are driven by numerous forces, both external (regulations, marketplace events) and internal (new products, business models)- all of which impact your organization. KPMG’s Risk Consulting Team can shape the thinking of Boards and Management regarding complex business issues. The team is composed of dedicated specialists who are well placed to assist you with your efforts towards regulatory compliance and beyond. The team, which is supported by a wider global network, is experienced in managing diverse issues including, but not limited to, regulatory compliance, anti-money laundering, governance structures and capital management. We welcome the opportunity to discuss what KPMG’s Risk Consulting Team can offer to you. Contact us Juanita Bencini Partner, Risk Consulting Advisory Services T. +356 2563 1053 juanitabencini@kpmg.com.mt www.kpmg.com.mt

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