Issue #173 - Midweek



Issue #173 - Midweek
Tricked back to Tripoli
pg 10-11
Reptilian rhapsody
Billboard blunder
• Maltese, Libyan patrols agree to ‘share’ Somali asylum seekers in distress at sea
• UNHCR questions AFM’s claim that some had ‘chosen’ to be returned to Libya
• Migrants in Malta insist the others were tricked into thinking they were going to Italy
• Government refuses to release any details on unprecedented joint operation
Chamber, MHRA insist
Vince Farrugia ‘does not
represent us’
86% of all applications for
MIH bond issue to be met
in full
FinanceMalta at Geneva
trusts conference
Government announces
€150 million stock issue
Pensions reform: a
nation’s tale
Ireland, Greece manage to
raise € billions
Page 64
Euro rises above US$ 1.30
Newspaper post
Revealed for the first time
since 1942: preparatory works
for the Valletta Regeneration
Project ‘raise the curtain’ on the
floorplan of Edward Middleton
Barry’s celebrated Royal Opera
House, almost 70 years after its
destruction in WW2
maltatoday, WEDNESDAY, 21 JULY 2010
UNHCR questions AFM’s claim
of ‘voluntary repatriation’ of
Somali migrants to Libya
THE United Nations High
Commission for Refugees
(UNHCR) has expressed serious doubts regarding the
Armed Forces of Malta’s claim
that 27 Somali migrants, returned to Libya during a joint
Malta-Libya rescue operation
on the high seas last Saturday
night, had accepted to return
to Libya of their own accord.
In a statement issued yesterday, UNHCR stressed that it
was “highly unlikely that people who have taken great risks
to leave would choose to board
a ship if they were aware that
it would be returning them to
The 27 migrants were part of
a boatload of 55 asylum seekers – all Somalis, including
women and children – who
made a distress call after finding themselves in difficulty
some 44 nautical miles south
of Malta.
The AFM dispatched a patrol
boat to intercept the migrants,
but found that a former Italian ‘Guardia di Finanza’, flying under the Libyan flag, had
arrived at roughly the same
In an operation which remains shrouded in mystery, 28
of the migrants were brought
to Malta by the AFM, while
the remaining people on the
dinghy were picked up by the
Italian vessel and returned to
In a statement, the UNHCR
said yesterday that it has not
received any detailed information from either government or the AFM about the
rescue operation, and it is not
clear why the 55 migrants rescued from a sinking dinghy
44 miles south of Malta were
divided into two groups, one
of which was brought to Malta and the other sent back to
In a written reply to a series
of questions made by MaltaToday, the only comment an
AFM spokesman would make
was: “the 27 migrants voluntarily embarked onboard the
Libyan vessel.”
UNHCR has meanwhile expressed concern over the fate
of the migrants who were returned to Libya.
The humanitarian organisation recalled that Libya is not
a signatory to the 1951 Refugee Convention, and it does
not have a national asylum
system in place.
“UNHCR was recently asked
to cease activities in the country, and although discussions
are under way to agree on
future operational arrangements in Libya, at this point
there are limited possibilities
Misratah Detention Centre, Libya (Photo by Gabriele del Grande)
for the office to intervene on
behalf of individuals who may
be in need of protection.”
The Armed Forces of Malta
broke a 48-hour silence since
Saturday and replied to MaltaToday at 21.15pm on Monday,
saying that the remaining migrants had ‘voluntarily’ opted
to return to Libya.
However, MaltaToday has
managed to speak to two
of the migrants who were
brought to Malta and are being held in detention in Safi.
The two - both Somali nationals - claimed that they never
knew the rest of their friends
were taken back to Libya.
In broken English, the migrants explained that when
the patrol craft came to their
rescue, they were led to believe
there was not enough space
for everyone on the Maltese
boat and the others were told
to jump onto the other.
“They spoke Italian, and we
believed they were going to
Italy,” one said, expressing
shock at the news that the rest
of their friends were taken
back to Libya.
MaltaToday is reliably informed that the Libyan flagged
vessel that took aboard the
27 men and women back to
Tripoli was in fact a former
Italian ‘Guardia di Finanza’
patrol craft, recently donated
by the Italian government to
the Libyan government as part
It is highly unlikely that
people who have taken great
risks to leave would choose
to board a ship if they were
aware that it would be
returning them to Libya
of the ‘Treaty of Friendship,
Partnership and Co-operation’ signed in August 2008.
Moreover, reliable sources
have informed MaltaToday
that the crew on board was reportedly ‘Italian speaking’ as
part of the same agreement.
Questions are now being
raised as to the possibility
that the migrants had been
‘tricked’ into believing that
they were to be taken to Italy,
and stripped of their fundamental right to seek asylum in
There has never been a recorded case of migrants de-
parting from Libya ‘voluntarily’ accepting to be taken back
to Tripoli.
Until last week, international
reports spoke of brutality and
inhumane treatment of migrants that were returned to
Libya from Italy. Humanitarian organisations denounced
the appalling conditions the
migrants are kept in. Detention cells are underground,
detainees are given no food
or water, and are repeatedly beaten by the detention
guards, while women are subjected to rape.
The Libyan government has
denied the reports.
The joint rescue operation
however raises further questions on whether the Maltese
government has reached some
kind of ‘ad hoc’ agreement
with Libya over the repatriation of migrants.
Never before has a Libyan
patrol craft responded to an
AFM distress call, while in
this case - the first time ever
- the Libyan flagged patrol
craft came as close as 44 miles
south of Malta for its rendezvous with the AFM patrol
This development comes a
few weeks after Maltese Prime
Minister Lawrence Gonzi
travelled to Libya with Italian premier Silvio Berlusconi
to meet with Libyan leader
Muammar Gaddafi, while last
week, Gonzi held official talks
in Rome with Berlusconi.
The meeting, that focused
mainly on illegal immigration,
included the participation of
Malta and Italy’s defense, foreign affairs and home affairs
Government and the AFM
have not returned any replies
to MaltaToday as to who,
within the AFM or on board
the patrol craft that intercepted the migrants, assumed the
responsibility of screening the
migrants while ‘sorting’ them
at sea on their eligibility for
asylum in the EU
maltatoday, WEDNESDAY, 21 JULY 2010
Police investigate migrant
children ‘pedo-porn’ network
MALTESE police have initiated investigations into reports
about the sexual abuse of migrant children living in Malta
by two Italian men who were
arrested in Italy yesterday.
The men, a 65-year-old
businessman from Florence
and a 51 former teacher from
Venice, allegedly ran a criminal network of paedophile
footage and photography.
The two men were arrested
in Italy following investigations by Police in Florence
and Syracuse.
The news was revealed yesterday by Italian Magistrates,
who announced the arrest
of two men who are to be
charged with possession and
dissemination of pedo-pornographic material.
Florence Magistrate Pietro Ferrante explained that
searches in the homes of the
two men yielded footage and
photographs taken by them
during “visits to Malta, Romania and Tunisia.”
According to the investigators, the two men travelled to
Malta and lured vulnerable
migrant children into performing lewd acts in exchange
for mobile phones, top-up
cards, shoes and clothes. The
two men would then film and
photograph the children and
sell the images abroad through
an internet site.
The material discovered was
apparently sold to clients that
have been identified in Italy, Germany, France, Switzerland, Holland, Belgium,
United Kingdom, Denmark,
Austria, France, the United
States, Canada and Mexico.
The two men ran an internet site that concluded 166
financial transactions.
One of the men had a previous conviction for enticing minors into prostitution,
filming and possession of
pedo-pornographic material.
A specialised Italian police officer investigating cyber crimes
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maltatoday, WEDNESDAY, 21 JULY 2010
Importation of mineral
water shoots up by 20%
ALTHOUGH Maltese tap water
is cheap and good to drink, the
Maltese are increasingly opting
for imported mineral water, statistics presented in parliament
The importation of mineral
waters from abroad has shot up
from €3 million to €3.6 million
between 2007 and 2009.
The sharpest rise was registered in the importation of
still natural mineral water,
which has shot up by 26%
from €1.9 million to €2.4 million.
The importation of carbonated natural water has remained stable at €1 to €1.1
while the importation of table water has dropped from
€77,888 to €71, 364.
While Malta has its own
equivalents of table water
which are produced either
from purified reverse osmosis
or extracted from boreholes,
it lacks its own source of natural mineral water.
According to EU law min-
eral water must come from
a protected source and cannot undergo any treatment,
except filtration, to remove
sand particles. Therefore
what goes into the bottle is
the same as what comes out of
the ground.
On the other hand table water is defined as bottled water
that comes from more than
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Applications open on Monday 2nd August 2010 at 8:30a.m. and close on the time and dates as
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Application forms may be obtained from, and lodged at, all Members
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one source, including the public water supply. Treatment of
the water is permitted to ensure it meets compositional or
microbiological requirements,
which are governed by law.
The marketing of Maltese bottled water as ‘ natural mineral
water’ is illegal because none of
the local brands match European Union criteria to be recognised as such.
A survey published on sister newspaper Illum in 2009
showed that 63% rely on bottled water as the main supply
for their drinking water.
The survey showed that
Maltese brand of table water
Kristal is the most popular,
followed by the San Michel
brand which is derived from
the potable water supply.
But the survey showed that
around 17% opted for imported brands.
Bottled water sold in Malta
generally consists in treated
water bought from the public
supply, as is the case for the San
Michel brand, or a mixture of
groundwater and tap water, as is
the case with the Kristal brand.
Aqua Azzura and Gocce
are exclusively derived from
groundwater, which is extracted for free from groundwater
sources. Irrespective of their
origin, all these brands are
marketed as table water.
Maltese tap water is totally
safe to drink, even if its taste
is negatively affected by high
levels of chloride and sodium.
Tap water is regularly tested
for chemical, physical and
listed in the Food Safety Act,
and nitrates levels, which
posed a serious health problem in the 1980s. Ground
water is blended with reverse
osmosis water to ensure that
nitrate levels never surpass EU
imposed levels.
Ironically while a bottle of imported natural mineral water
costs at least 50 cents, the same
amount of tap water costs less
than a cent.
US studies have found the total energy required for bottled
water production was as much
as 2,000 times the energy cost
of producing tap water.
maltatoday, WEDNESDAY, 21 JULY 2010
Divorce billboard: ‘disowned’
by both Church and sponsors
IF it was intended as an early
warning shot in the ongoing
divorce debate, the decision to
erect a large billboard with the
words “God doesn’t want divorce!” on the Zebbug church
parvis has evidently backfired,
with the parish priest yesterday
issuing an apology to the billboard’s official sponsor, Vision
In fact, the advertisement beneath the ominous message –
originally featuring the official
logos of Nintendo and Sony
products such as Wii, Xbox,
Playstation and PS2, among others – was painted over at some
point since Monday, as the pictures on this page attest.
Yesterday, Zebbug parish
priest Fr Daniel Cardona issued
a statement to explain that the
billboard in question was in fact
part of ‘an ongoing campaign in
favour of the Catholic Church’s
official teaching on divorce –
adding that he “regretted any
inconvenience” caused to the
“electronic company that helped
the parish cover part of the costs
of this billboard”.
Contacted separately by Mal-
Church billboard ‘divorced’ from official sponsors after public furore
taToday, Vision Tech manager
Jason Grech explained that his
company was one of several to
have sponsored the Church’s
billboard initiative, and that he
had no idea what message the
billboard would display.
“In view of the furore surrounding this particular billboard, the parish priest and I
both agreed that it would be
better to remove the advert,” he
On his part, Fr Cardona also
explained that the billboard
message changes periodically,
and that “the time had come to
erect a new billboard.”
By coincidence, the change
in billboard happened to take
place last Sunday: the feast of St
Joseph, when Jeffrey Pullicino
Orlando – the Nationalist MP
who has just presented a draft
divorce law as a private member’s bill in Parliament – attended the traditional mass inside
the Zebbug band club across the
road from the Church.
The same mass was celebrated
by Fr Daniel Cardona.
As was perhaps predictable,
the initiative was widely inter-
preted as a political statement
ahead of the parliamentary debate on divorce, now scheduled
for after the summer recess.
To many, it was also deeply
reminiscent of the early 1960s
– a time of deep unrest, when
the Labour Party executive was
excommunicated, and voting
Labour was declared a Mortal
The Labour Party however
played down the incident.
“I checked the calendar again
this morning. It reads July
2010,” Communications director Kurt Farrugia said yesterday. “We do not have problems
with the Church expressing its
views. Latest reports confirm
the Curia was not directly involved in setting up the sponsored message. We hope everyone realises that the times have
changed and that everyone is
entitled to express one’s opinion
without fear.”
In fact, the Curia this week
clarified that it had nothing to do
with the decision to erect the billboard.
“This was a parish initiative. The
Curia was not asked for its opinion
so the responsibility falls totally on
the parish,” a Church spokesman
told The Times yesterday.
Shame on all the MPs, comfortable in their air
conditioned cars or offices, totally oblivious to the
horses suffering in the sun.
Shame on MEPA and/or Transport Malta
unleashed on an unsuspecting public with all their
legal labyrinths and acrobacy while the cab horses
are scorching in the sun.
Shame on all those people who see these
creatures suffering, and plod on in life as if
nothing is happening.
Thank You to those few MPs, organisations and members of the public who are urging the authorities to erect a
shelter for the horses.
Simon Peter Micallef
For a humane and just Malta.
maltatoday, WEDNESDAY, 21 JULY 2010
Uncovering the
Royal Opera House
RECENT works carried out on
the Royal Opera House (ROH) in
Valletta “reveal that it was a fine
example of the way theatres in the
19th century were conceived”.
That is how Vicki Ann Cremona, Malta’s Ambassador in Tunisia who is also a theatre historian,
described the recently uncovered
theatre skeleton.
The theatre site has been mired
in controversy for the past year,
with the government wanting to
leave it as an open-air performance space, and artists believing it
would be a waste to use the venue
only in summer, the only time of
year when any open space can be
used for performances.
The base of the ROH shows it
can function as a closed theatre space if adapted to modern
theatre exigencies. This was expressed by theatre lecturer John
Schranz and Joe Vella (aka ‘Fuji’),
who has 35 years of experience in
the technical aspect of theatre,
and is also a member of Association for Performing Arts Practitioners (APAP).
Schranz remarked: “It is not
correct to say that the footprint
cannot house a theatre to meet
Malta’s needs. Details of the
ROH seating plan, stage dimensions and overall footprint speak
out for themselves. It shows that
less than a third of the space was
used for the stage and less than a
third was used for audience seating.”
Vella commented: “What I
cannot understand is on what
grounds we are being told that
the present site is not large
enough to have a fully-fledged
theatre. There are theatres which
have a smaller footprint and yet
the most demanding (stagewise)
productions are performed there.
“A case in point is the theatre La
There are
theatres which
have a smaller
footprint and
yet the most
are performed
Monnaie in Brussels. This theatre roughly has the same footprint of the ROH, and in February 2011 they will be performing
Wagner’s ‘Parsifal’.”
Even the Aida, an enormously
demanding opera, was performed
in the ROH a few years after it had
premiered abroad.
“Edward Barry designed the
theatre for 1,095 seated persons
and 200 standing. According to
the original plans the proscenium
width was 14m, the width of the
stage was 26m, while the depth of
the stage from the main curtain
setting line was 15m.
The auditorium and stage area
only occupied 30% of the entire
site footprint. The other 70% were
taken up by features which are
irrelevant to a truly functioning
theatre,” added Vella.
Vella also mentioned that the
site cannot be used as is, and a
reproduction of Barry’s theatre
would be irrelevant. It needs to
be transformed to fulfil today’s
needs. However, he insisted
such footprint can accomodate a
closed theatre if designed appropriately.
The site of the Royal Opera House now uncovered
Rising from the ashes – literally
By Vicki Ann Cremona
The Royal Opera House was inaugurated
in 1866, exactly 10 years after the Covent
Garden theatre had burned down. It was
this fire that led Barry to redesign a new
theatre, based on Milan’s La Scala, at the
time the largest theatre in Europe. His rise
to fame led to the commission for the Malta
Royal Opera House.
The photos show clearly that the actual
concept of the building followed other
European models of the time: the theatre
had a large foyer, which today would
probably be situated under the theatre, in
order not to rob any space from the seating;
it had a wide horseshoe shape, which was
the nineteenth-century development of the
original baroque structure of the ‘teatro
all’italiana’, that had spread through Europe
in the 18th century; and quite a deep stage
for the time, as the photos clearly show,
and which in modern times, would require
at least an equal space beneath for scenic
changes, rehearsal space etc.
It must not be forgotten that the theatre,
which at the time had cost £70,000, burned
down in 1873, leaving only the exterior
masonry intact. It was restructured by
the Maltese architects E.L. Galizia and
S. Fenech, together with W. Paulson, at
considerable cost, and fitted with new
technology that included lighter materials
and a zinc soffitt, to protect against fire.
It would be interesting to carry out some
intense archaeological work to see how
the original shape was modified when
the theatre was rebuilt in the space of
five years. It is of vital importance to
archeologically document the site very
carefully, as this data is essential for
theatre and architectural history and
research, and the current excavations
have provided a unique opportunity
to record initial structures and
modifications, and thereby understand
better the way theatre, and therefore
society, in 19th century Malta was physically
organised. There is some visual, graphic and
written documentation to this effect, but
examining the physical reality far surpasses
any paper description.
Longitudinal section as redesigned by Webster Paulson in 1874
maltatoday, WEDNESDAY, 21 JULY 2010
EU inspections satisfied
with food safety controls…
...but controls on food
additives found lacking
MALTA has a satisfactory system of official controls on food
hygiene, even if a number of
shortcomings exist with regards
to controls on food additives.
This is the result of an audit
carried out by the Food and Veterinary Office (FVO) in Malta
in February 2010 to evaluate
the implementation of EU legislation in the area of general food
hygiene, food additives (FA) and
food contact materials (FCM).
Staff resources allocated for
inspection duties relating to official
controls of food safety were
found to be adequate. Malta
currently has 83 inspectors for
food and environmental health
purposes. 24 of these are involved in food premises inspections.
But additional staff are needed
at the Public Health Laboratory,
the only laboratory facility in
Malta which is designated to
analyse samples taken in official controls, which currently
employs 38 people.
The microbiology section
currently employs 11 technical
staff; one scientific officer, one
pharmacist and nine medical
laboratory scientists. Staff in
the chemical laboratory include
eight technical staff; five scientific officers and three medical
laboratory scientists.
The main shortcoming with
regards to Food Hygiene controls is the lack of guidelines
provided by the competent authorities to inspectors leading
to inadequate assessment of
food hazards.
The report claims that staff
responsible for examining food
additives have not received sufficient training to undertake
their duties competently and
their knowledge and experience
was limited.
An inspection in a food
processing company showed
that Maltese inspectors had no
practical experience of undertaking official controls in this
area. Official monitoring system of the consumption and
use of food additives is also inexistent.
Controls on labelling were also
found to be satisfactory.
An inspection in a supermarket showed that all products
reviewed, ranging from frozen
products, bakery products, soft
drinks, meat products and vegetable products were found to be
in compliance with all labeling
The report also concludes that
Malta has a satisfactory system
in place for the labeling of food
In 2009 the Maltese authorities have issued 21 contraven-
tion notices were in connection
with food labeling. Of these,
eight pre packed foodstuffs had
no label at all and three had
no expiry date, three products
showed tampered labeling and
another three labels were not in
one of the languages accepted in
Malta. One contravention order
was issued because no manufacturers address was written.
maltatoday, WEDNESDAY, 21 JULY 2010
Iran, Syria behind
Lockerbie attack –
Italian prosecutor
FORMER prosecutor in the Ustica tragedy trial, Rosario Priore, has dismissed the Libyan
motive for the Lockerbie attack
as “inconsistent”, contending
instead behind the 1988 tragedy there were in reality Iran
and Syria.
If true, this would dispel the
so-called Malta connection,
according to which the bomb
which destroyed PanAm 103
in 1989, killing 270 people, had
been loaded onto the aircraft at
the Luqa airport.
During an interview with Italian news agency AGI, published
five days ago, Priore delved at
length into the role of the Popular Front for the Liberation of
Palestine – General Command
(FPLP-GC), which at the time
was led by Ahmed Jibril: the real person “materially responsible
for the attack”, Priore claims.
“This possibility has emerged
in inquiries which delved about
Palestinian resistance organisations involved in terrorist attacks and attempts on Italian
territory,” Priore said.
“One particular inquiry led to
the heart of Jibril’s organisation,”
he added. What had emerged
was that “the FPLP-CG had militants all across Europe, in particular in the Federal Republic of
The FPLP-CG had ties with the
secret services of the Syrian
air force, and, through Damascus, “with the other States on
the West black list, first of all,
It was at this point that Priore
made his revelations about the
Lockerbie case.
“In a base of that organisation, they found devices that
were totally similar to those
which had led to the downing
of the Pan Am aircraft,” he told
During the investigations on
the Ustica case – in which a
Itavia DC-9 was mysteriously
downed, allegedly by missile,
over the small island dof Ustica off Sicily - thanks he had
the possibility of seeing and
analysing the evidence of the
Lockerbie case.
In October 1988, the West
German government transmitted an alert to Great Britain and
all the other Allied countries
on those devices, which were
equipped with a “baro-switch,
a mechanism which put in motion a 30 minute timer when the
atmospheric pressure became
lower,” Priore explained.
“To reach the pressure needed
to activate the timer, this mechanism took seven minutes after
take-off, then the detonation
would take place,” he added.
“The explosion on board the
Pan Am flight took place exactly
38 minutes after departure, almost a perfect coincidence,” Priore said. He explained how the
Palestinian possibility behind
the Lockerbie bombing was
not new. “To say the truth, this
possibility had already came
out two years after the bombing in 1989”.
In 2000, “Syria had admitted
with the British ambassador at
Damascus to be in possession
of a confession which put the
responsibility on Jibril’s movement,” Priore revealed.
“It did not appear clear if Syria wanted to pass on the document in which a Palestinian
with the battlename of Modby
Goben declared his membership to the FPLP-GC and admitted to have committed the
bombing following orders from
that organisation.
“In view of these new circumstances, the Scottish court
which was going to judge Megrahi in Holland had given a
set for
change of
Rosario Priore (right) receiving the International Giuseppe Sciacca
postponement to the following
January in 2001,” he explained.
“A CIA agent had affirmed
that Iran was behind the attack, then he had explained
that the US had taken care not
to pursue that country, because in that way, oil supplies
from that country would have
been stopped and the economy
would have been damaged,”
Priore said.
“The main witness, Maltese
shopkeeper Tony Gauci, who
had recognised Megrahi not
clearly and limpidly, had received two million US dollars
from US institutions,” he added.
“Likewise, his brother Paul
Gauci, who had collaborated
in recognising the clothes that
were allegedly purchased by
Megrahi and then found in the
baggage that contained the device, had received USD $1 million,” Priore added.
He revealed how “the first of
the two brothers, Tony Gauci,
has left Malta and has transferred himself to Australia”.
“The night before the bombing, there had been a breakin in Terminal 3, where both
Pan Am and Iran Air had the
structures for the recovery and
maintenance of aircraft,” Priore recalled. “The following
night, the containers for baggage were put on the Pan Am
103 exactly from this area,” he
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THE lull in migration in the
past year seems to have erased
memories of overcrowding in
detention centres, with part
of the Safi closed centre for
migrants now set for a partial
change of use.
Malta Industrial Parks has
just presented a planning application to convert an existing
taxiway into a public vehicular
access road which would entail
the demolition of part of the detention centre and its “change
of use from Refugee Centre to
AFM stores”.
The site plan shows the new
road passing directly through
the detention centre.
A spokesperson for the Ministry of Home Affairs confirmed
that the application will affect
“only part of one of the three
separate blocks that make up
the Safi Detention Centre”.
The same spokesperson confirmed that there are no plans
to relocate the detention centre despite this loss of space.
The closure of the present
road leading to Safi and its replacement by the existing taxiway is a result of a €17 million
Aviation Park project which is
set to create 350 new jobs.
maltatoday, WEDNESDAY, 21 JULY 2010
maltatoday, WEDNESDAY, 21 JULY 2010
Off to see th
Following recent claimed ‘sightings’ of the extinct
Selmunett wall lizard at Haqar Qim, local naturalist
Arnold Sciberras takes a closer look at the status of
Maltese lizards
ON a recent trip to Malta, a
certain Linda Downing from
Devon (UK), encountered a lizard species which she believed
may have been the Selmunett
wall lizard – reportedly extinct
since 2005.
She described the mysterious
reptiles in a letter to The Sunday Times (11 July 2010): “We
are very interested in wildlife,
and take a delight in watching lizards in Malta. Until that
time, we had only observed the
small, swift goldish-green kind
and the more rounded type with
suckers on their feet.
“Walking back down from the
higher temple, nearly to the official in the shelter box, we saw
three lizards, new to us. They
were bigger, plumper and black,
with brightly coloured specks.
“I am sure this was a sighting of
the Selmunett lizard. I do hope
someone more knowledgeable
that we are could go to this site
and try to observe them…”
Following this letter and comments posted below on the
website, I would like to clear a
number of misconceptions that
might have risen from this recorded sighting.
First of all, no one declared
that the fresh Maltese crab is
extinct, as this letter also fleetingly suggests.
Only scientific studies can ensure the real status of the species which till now I am not
aware of any being published.
The Maltese ‘qabru’ may be rare,
restricted or even endangered,
but definitely not extinct.
Unfortunately, however, the
same cannot be said for the
Selmunett Wall Lizard, at least
in its natural habitat. I must
agree with J. Sciberras’ statement, posted on 12 July, that
lizards are absent from the island North-East of Malta which
gives the subspecies its name.
Technically, it is absent from
Zurrieq coast up to Cirkewwa,
excluding two recent introduced
populations. Full studies on this
status are still under way but
this monitoring has been carried out since 1998.
J. Schembri’s recorded sightings of lizards at Hagar Qim
might be correct, as I am aware
that locals have done their best
to introduce this lizard illegally
in this location although all results I knew when I visited last
(approximately late 2008) have
Regarding Downing’s description of the lizard, it hardly fits
a mainland wall lizard, and resembles more the population of
Selmunett or that mentioned of
From the natural habitat of
that location, however, the sighting was most likely either an
Ocellated skink (xahmet l-art)
or, from the limb description, a
Moorish or Turkish gecko.
While lizards are rare in this
part of Malta, Western-Whip
Leopard snakes and the Chameleon were also recorded in
this locality.
A note must be made though
on the coloration of the Maltese
Wall Lizard. As far as I am con-
lizards are
absent from
the island
North-East of
Malta which
gives the
its name
Maltese wall lizard - Gozo variety (photo by Arnold Sciberras)
Chameleon - introduced by a Jesuit priest in the 19th century
Selmunett wall lizard - extinct since 2005 (photo by Arnold Sciberras)
cerned, the naming of several
subspecies is today invalid as we
have five subspecies named from
17 definite separate populations
(including those of the Pelagian
islands) that I am aware of, and
these are based only from morphological grounds (appearance).
If we place each population as
a subspecies because of its coloration, we would need to have
17 subspecies, not five, because
all of them have their unique
To add to this, large islands
like Malta have separate populations within itself and variations are more common within
individuals than those of smaller islands and islets.
In a study published by the
author in 2007 it emerges that
coastal lizards vary from mainland lizards, and although I
wish sincerely that a population
of Selmunett lizards still exists
somewhere, even if by human
intervention, the possibility is
highly unlikely.
maltatoday, WEDNESDAY, 21 JULY 2010
e lizards…
The only Turk to have conquered Malta: a Moorish gecko (photo by Arnold Sciberras)
Lizards and their localities
The Maltese wall lizard (Podarcis filfolensis) belongs to the
genus Podarcis that consists of at least 18 species with over 195
subspecies. It is endemic to the Maltese islands and the Pelagic
islands (Linosa and Lampione), where a fifth known subspecies
The most common is the P. filfolensis maltensis, which is found
on the three main islands: Malta, Gozo and Comino.
P. filfolensis filfolensis is confined to Filfla, and is the largest of
the subspecies (males can reach up to 30cm). It is arguably the
most diverse from the others, being much darker in colour and
covered with small bluish specks.
P. filfolensis generalensis is confined to Fungus Rock off Dwejra
P. filfolensis laurentiimuelleri is found on the Pelagic islands,
and until 2005, P. filfolensis kieselbachi (Selmunett wall lizard)
was confined to the Selmunett island, the smaller of the two St
Paul’s islands), but is now extinct.
Where did they come from?
There are 16 reptile species in Malta, five of which being marine
turtles (of which two were recorded only once).
Of the rest, many were deliberately or accidentally imported.
Of Malta’s four species of snakes, two are believed to have been
introduced by cargo ships during the First World War. These
are the Cat snake (Telescopus fallax fallax) and the Algerian
whipsnake (Coluber florulentus algiru).
Both are believed to have been accidentally imported along with
fire-wood shipments stored at Floriana between 1914 and 1918.
Our only resident species of Chameleon was reportedly introduced
to Malta from North Africa in 1880 by a Jesuit priest, who
released a few specimens in a St Julian’s garden.
Within 20 years the chameleon spread to various parts of Malta.
The Whipsnake is one of two snakes accidentally imported to Malta during the First World War
I must point out, though, that
lizards from Poala/Tarxien
area are the closest specimens
that resemble the Selmunett
lizard, but are not identical.
In addition, males and females also differ greatly from
each other, and the same individual differs in coloration
(but not patterns) even within
Only by molecular studies,
as are currently being carried
out, can we in the nearby future tell how genetically variable one population is from
another, and only then will we
be able to clearly distinguish
their taxonomic rank.
Today, by human intervention and carelessness, everything is possible but what I
suggested is the most reasonable thought. I hope that fu-
If we place each population
(of lizard) as a subspecies
because of its coloration,
we would need to have 17
subspecies, not five
ture recordings of sightings
are supplied by photography
or specimens, unless a permit
is also required.
maltatoday, WEDNESDAY, 21 JULY 2010
Anna Mallia
[email protected]
You could be next!
he judgement ordering
One Radio to pay
over €50,000 to The
Performing Rights Society
may have come as good news
to some, but little do they
know that they could be the
next victims of PRS. But
what is this all about you may
In the UK, the singers
and composers united and
formed The Performing
Rights Society, so that anyone
who plays their music in
public has to pay royalties
to the copyright holder.
This was founded in 1914
for the purpose of collecting
royalties for the non-dramatic
public performance and
broadcasting of members’
works. The payment varies
from country to country, and
the definition of performance
varies from country to
country. This means that
if you have an office or a
garage and both of them are
accessible to the public and
you play the radio, strictly
speaking you have to pay a
fee to the Performing Rights
In Malta this society has
its representative and lately
it also registered itself as a
Maltese company to do the
job and collect money from
all those who play music.
This means that any office,
establishment, factory, radio,
cinema has to have a licence
to play music and has to pay
royalties to this society. Yes,
even cinemas which do not
choose the music for the
films that they show, have to
pay royalties notwithstanding
that they already pay a fee
to KRS, the Malta film
distribution company, to
show the films.
The word ‘perfoming’ in
Malta is very stretched, so
that even if you have a small
business and you are playing
background music you have
to have a licence to do that
and that licence means that
you have to pay a fee to the
Performing Rights Society. I
have nothing against giving
what is due to the singers and
composers but it is not fair
that this PRS in Malta has
a free hand to establish its
own fees and does not give
any information as to what
actually goes abroad and
what stays in the pocket of
the people who do the job in
There is no price index
published by the PRS where
one can check what the
royalties fees are and if they
vary between one place and
the other. It seems that the
PRS has total control and
the judgement against Grima
Communications, former
owners of XFM, wherein
the initital demand by PRS
for €28,000 was reduced to
€7,728, confirms this.
The judgement against
Super One radio must be a
wake-up call because the PRS
in the UK is stretching the
interpretation of performing
and the likelihood is that it
will do the same in Malta.
Last year the PRS sued a
shop assistant who was told
she could not sing while she
stacked shelves without a
performance licence.
It all happened to Sandra
Burt, 56, who works at a food
store in Clackmannanshire,
and was warned that she
could be fined for her
singing by the PRS. In the
UK, members of the PRS
call all shops to make sure
that they have a licence to
play music. It all happened
when the village store where
Burt works was contacted
by the PRS to warn them
that a licence was needed to
play a radio within earshot
customers. When the shop
owner decided to get rid of
the radio as a result, Mrs Burt
said she began singing as she
worked and threatened PRS
with constitutional case for
breach of her fundamental
human rights. In response to
the furore created by their
initial hardline stance, PRS
later apologised.
You may consider this a
one-off, case but the rules
and regulations of the PRS in
the UK are the same (or ought
to be) as the rules adopted
by the PRS in Malta. It is up
to the PRS to come up with
a clear policy as to who has
to have a licence to pay them
royalties. Because any outlet
that plays radio or music to
the public or has its music
heard by the public has to
have a licence and has to pay
PRS royalties. PRS maintains
that by playing a radio in a
“public place” allows them to
collect royalties on behalf of
the performers singing on the
This means that even
government departments,
post offices, corporations, all
offices where their workers
keep the radio playing, have
to have a licence to play
music. There is nothing in
the law that excludes the
government departments and
/or government agencies from
the licence and those who
provide the music for a good
deed might be in for a nice
surprise as they can get a call
from the PRS ordering them
to get a licence.
No account of the monies
collected by the PRS in Malta
is published or even given.
We have no clue as to how
the fees of these royalties
Promoter Howard Keith, left, and artiste Ira Losco (centre): PRS must pay Maltese songwriters their dues
The public must know
what has become of all
this money: how much of
it was sent abroad and
how much given out to
the Maltese artists
are established and by whom
and how they are calculated.
I know for example that
in the case of cinemas,
they are calculated on the
amount of people attending
and that there are many
businesses who complain
how they are being paid to
pay for music that is in the
film’s soundtrack and that
ultimately it is not the cinema
that is playing the music, but
the KRS which distributes
these films.
Moreover the film industry
had paid already for these
royalties to include the music
in the film, and it is unjust
that the royalties have to paid
per capita every time that the
film is shown.
It is something that I fail to
comprehend and the same
applies to radio stations. In
Malta strictly speaking it is
still up to PRS to choose its
targets and I do not know the
criteria it has for choosing
radio but not television,
because both of them
transmit music. I do not know
how they say that anyone
who plays music, even in the
waiting room, has to have
a licence and that licence is
obviously their alarm bell to
start collecting royalties.
Neither does the PRS
give any information as to
what happens to the money
collected from Malta. I
remember once when I
enquired and made some
research, I was told that
for them Malta is such a
small contribution that they
do not include Malta in
their accounts so that the
Maltese who are paying for
royalties do not know what
is becoming of this money.
It is important that the work
of artists is protected but
it is just as important that
the monies collected on
their behalf ends up in their
pockets. This is something
that the PRS, at least in
Malta, still fails to do.
Even the local artists lately
held a press conference
reminding the PRS that
they are still waiting to be
paid for royalties. Howard
Keith, director of production
company Jagged House, and
manager to popular local
artistes Ira Losco, Tribali
and The Riffs among others,
stated that he has been
claiming royalties for his
artists for the last 15 years.
He was quoted as saying
that it was about time that
PRS pay up their dues to
lcoal artists who have never
received a dime in their
Even the guild of Maltese
composers, songwriters,
singers and Musicians
(UKAM) last year voiced its
concerns about the royalties
which the PRS is bound to
give to the rightful artists,
and has been complaining
since 1991 that the rightful
writers are not getting their
dues. The UKAM claims that
the Maltese artists are still
owed up to €200, 000 for 2007
alone while the amount in
unpaid royalties dating back
to the 1990s still has to be
It is the government’s duty to
intervene: after all the PRS is
licensed by the government of
Malta to collect and distribute
royalties to local artists and, like
any organization, the PRS in
Malta must publish its accounts
since it started its operations in
The public must know what
has become of all this money:
how much of it was sent abroad
and how much given out to
the Maltese artists. It is also
the government’s duty to
inform the public about their
responsibilities if they play
music in their establishment or
their place of work; to publish
how much the licence fee is and
what are the royalties due.
We cannot remain in this
Business Today
Calculating the
Page 16
reform: a
nation’s tale
Euro rises above
US $1.30
Page 17
In collaboration with:
Page 20
Chamber, MHRA
insist Vince
Farrugia ‘does
not represent us’
Charlot Zahra
In a rare joint statement yesterday,
the other two employers’ organisations in Malta, the Malta Chamber of
Commerce, Enterprise and Industry
(MCCEI) and the Malta Hotels’ and
Restaurants’ Association (MHRA)
are standing four-square behind the
MEA’s contention that GRTU Director-General Vince Farrugia’s nomination one of the two employers’
representative to the EESC (European Economic and Social Committee)
– a forum of civil society groups that
consult with the EU at all levels – was
“The two employer bodies feel that
of the two nominations, only (Stefano)
Mallia represents the employer group,”
the Malta Chamber and MHRA
insisted in their joint statement.
However, they have refrained
from suspending their participation
in the MCESD, Meusac and the
Employment Relations’ Board as the
MEA have done to protest at the lack
of consultation by Government over
Farrugia’s nomination.
The Malta Chamber and the MHRA
have called on Government to
“address the situation and ensure that
the representatives nominated on the
EESC do in fact represent their correct
sectorial interests in the correct EESC
To this extent, the Malta Chamber
and MHRA were “of the same view
as the MEA” and were of the opinion
that “any GRTU nomination for the
EESC should be allocated to Group
III” (Self-Employed) rather than to
Group 2, which includes employers.
In this regard both employers’
organisations insisted that, “given
the interests represented by the
GRTU, it would be well suited for
the GRTU to have a representative in
Group III”.
They explained how according to the
EESC’official structure, the Employers’
Group (Group I), was made up of
entrepreneurs and representatives of
entrepreneurial associations supporting
employers in industry, commerce and
Group II referred to the Employees’
Group which typically was made up of
trade unions.
On the other hand, Group III
referred to Various Interest Groups,
which included among others, small
businesses and the crafts sector.
On Saturday, speaking exclusively to, MEA DirectorGeneral Joe Farrugia had accused
Parliamentary Secretary Chris Said of
86% of all applications
for MIH bond issue to
be met in full
Mediterranean Investments Holding
p.l.c. (MIH), a member of the Corinthia Group of Companies, yesterday announced its allotment policy
in respect of its €40 million 7.15%
2015-2017 bond issue.
The company explained in a
company announcement on the Malta
Stock Exchange (MSE) on Monday
that since subscriptions received
at the placement agreements stage
were in excess of the €15 million
that were set aside for this purpose,
the company satisfied about 86.9%
of subscriptions and refunded
the rest to Authorised Financial
With respect to applications
received from preferred applicants,
the company explained that
applications received from investors
who already held investments in one
or more of the Corinthia Group’s
listed companies, would be met in
full up to the first €5,000 in the case
of EUR Bonds, the first £4,200 in
the case of GBP Bonds; and the first
$6,000 in the case of USD Bonds.
The company also announced that
any balance on these applications
would be scaled down to around
15.0% while any unallocated
balances thereafter would participate
in the allocation policy applicable to
the general public.
With respect to applications from
the general public and unallocated
applicants, these would be met in
full up to the first €4,300 in the case
of EUR Bonds; the first £3,600 in
the case of GBP Bonds; and the first
$5,200 in the case of USD Bonds.
The remaining balances would be
scaled down to around 9.3%.
The company explained how this
meant that EUR Bond applications
up to €10,000, GBP Bond
applications up to £8,400 and USD
applications up to $12,000 received
from preferred applicants, which
accounted for 82% of all applications
received for the Bond issue, would
be accepted in full.
Interest on the Bonds would
commence as from today. Allotment
letters and refunds of un-allocated
monies would be paid by next
Monday, 26 July 2010 by direct
credit to the bank account indicated
on the respective application forms.
The Board of Directors of MIH
plc thanked the investing public,
institutional investors, authorised
financial intermediaries and the
banks for their strong support.
Keep it simple
Disowned: Vince Farrugia
misinterpreting the nominations made
by employers’ groups by saying that
Farrugia was an representative of the
“Chris Said is wrong when he is
saying that he received two lists from the
employers’ groups. There was only one
list for employers as Farrugia’s list did
not come from any of the recognised
employers’ groups in Malta,” Farrugia
had told MaltaToday.
“He is using this excuse to lump
Farrugia’s nomination to the EESD on
employers,” Farrugia had insisted.
Moreover, the Prime Minister “has
not commented a single word” on the
alleged agreement between GRTU
and MEA, the MEA Director-General
Asked whether MEA was ready
to enter into discussions with the
Government, Farrugia had explained
how the Association was ready to enter
into discussion with the Government.
“However the Government first has to
recognise its mistakes,” he insisted.
In a statement issued earlier during the
day, the Parliamentary Secretariat for
Public Dialogue and Consultation had
claimed that employers’ organisations
on the Malta Council for Economic
and Social Development (MCESD)
had failed to agree on submitting one
list of nominees for appointment to
the European Economic and Social
Committee (EESC).
One of these lists proposed Mallia
from the Chamber of Commerce
and Lawrence Mizzi from the Malta
Employers’ Association (MEA); the
other list proposed Farrugia.
The parliamentary secretariat had
said the government “will try to find a
solution to the dispute in any particular
sector, where possible… government
sees the MEA’s voice in MCESD to be
in the national interest.”
On Friday, the MEA had
announced that it was suspending
its participation from all structures
of social dialogue in which the
Government was involved over
Farrugia’s nomination to the
despite the fact that the GRTU was
not an employers’ organisation as
prescribed by EESC rules.
On his part, GRTU directorgeneral Vince Farrugia had brushed
off accusations by the MEA that
his nomination to the EESC
Farrugia had insisted MEA
director-general Joseph Farrugia
was only showing his “petty
jealousies” at not being appointed
to the EESC, and that the MEA was
“bonkers” to have withdrawn from
the MCESD in protest.
[email protected]
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maltatoday, WEDNESDAY, 21 JULY 2010
Business Today Supplement
FinanceMalta at Geneva
trusts conference
FinanceMalta has exhibited for the
second time at the Transcontinental
Trusts 2010, a 2-day conference held
in Geneva between June 30 and July
1, to tackle the key issues facing the
international trust industry caused
by the aftermath of the global financial crisis. FinanceMalta secured a
stand at the conference, teaming up
with local law firm, DF Advocates, a
FinanceMalta member. Strengthening FinanceMalta’s presence there
was Dr. Anthony Cremona who was
nominated by the Institute of Financial Service Practitioners (IFSP) to
deliver a well-attended breakfast
briefing entitled ‘Foundations: The
Practical Implications’.
With over 40 key jurisdictions in
attendance, ‘TransTrusts’ provided
FinanceMalta with opportunities
to network with over 100 leading
international trust practitioners.
While more regulation - but not
necessarily better regulation - is the
likely outcome, the question to be
resolved at the conference was how
will the increase in regulation affect
private clients and their advisers.
In response to these questions, the
Transcontinental Trust organisers
brought in the largest number
of international speakers this
conference has ever seen in its 25year history. Speakers from Hong
Kong, Singapore, the Cayman
Islands, Brazil and the United States
all tackled key transcontinental
issues. Among the keynote speakers,
James Hines, the world-renowned
economist and academic from
the University of Michigan Law
School, gave a presentation on why
IFCs matter. International Financial
Centres are essential platforms
for international private banking
and require careful regulatory
management exemplified by key
jurisdictions like Malta, which grew
by 22% during 2009.
FinanceMalta’s Head of Business
said, “Now that the dust has settled
on the financial crisis, IFCs are
aggressively chasing business whilst
keeping a close watch on the G20’s
regulatory reform proposals, and
they are fully conscious of their
political side effects.” Mr. L’ecuyer
added: “While FinanceMalta will
continue to ensure that it is present
at the very best events that the
industry has to offer, the message
is clear: Malta is a safe, robust and
innovative jurisdiction ready to
do business with the world.”
Dr. Jean Farrugia from Deguara Farrugia Advocates on the FinanceMalta stand at TransTrusts 2010
Microsoft Malta attends Education
Leaders Forum in Poland
Fiorella Ellul Sullivan and Karl
Davies Barret from Microsoft Malta have just attended the Education
Leaders Forum organised by Microsoft and held in Poland following this year’s Imagine Cup finals,
which brought together over 500
of the most talented students globally, hosted in the same country.
The two day forum was attended by
around 140 policy makers from 43
countries. Microsoft Malta invited
Mario Azzopardi, Director of the
Life Long Learning Programme
within the Education Ministry, to
attend as a representative from
creativity and innovation: A key
to global success’, this year’s
Education Leaders Forum was held
in collaboration with the United
Nations Educational, Scientific, and
Cultural Organisation (Unesco) and
the European Schoolnet programme
with the aim of creating dialogue
on holistic change with the goal
of putting technology behind core
innovation. This was the fourth in
a series of forums exploring the
future of post secondary education
and the strategies for overcoming
barriers to its implementation.
Anthony Salcito, Vice-President
of Microsoft Education and host of
the forum says “there are three keys
we’ve been talking about to reach
these goals: Access, Employability
& Innovation.
Having the
Education Leaders Forum at
the same time as the Worldwide
finals for the Imagine Cup is not
a coincidence. We link these two
Mario Azzopardi, Fiorella Ellul Sullivan and Karl Davies Barret
events together because both focus
on the importance of technology as
key to global success - whether it is
obtaining your first PC or access to
cloud technologies - which leads to
employability, economic stability
and national competitiveness. “
“In today’s information age, there
is little question that information
communication technology (ICT)
can help drive opportunity and
provide a competitive edge in the
world economy. World Bank data
shows that worldwide, companies
that use ICT have over 5% higher
profitability than enterprises that
do not use ICT. For every 10percentage-point increase in the
penetration of broadband services,
there is an increase in economic
growth of 1.3 percentage points.
But this very data that can give
hope also creates the digital divide.
The bridge across that divide is
Salcito concluded, “Microsoft
is committed to making the world
where we live and work a better
place. By listening to the needs
of governments and their citizens,
we’re able to channel the passion
of our people and the power of
technology to the challenges facing
the world today. Microsoft’s Shape
the Future initiative is a program
that helps governments reach
ambitious goals by combining
Microsoft products and services,
years of citizenship, government
and education expertise along with
broad public private partnership
experience. This program has
provided more than 1 million
European students access to new
PCs in the last 12 months alone.”
Hal Plotkin, a senior policy
advisor at the office of the under
secretary of education in the United
States Education Department was
a keynote speaker who focused
on the development of vocational
learning. “Our challenge is to figure
out how to transfer higher education
from a system that pushes people
out to one that attracts people,”
he said. “People need to be given
an opportunity to contribute to the
country’s economy because this
benefits society at large. There is
a lot of untapped human capital,
a lot of individuals who have the
capabilities to cure the scourge of
cancer and find solutions on how to
bridge cultural divides.”
The Education Leaders forum
is a highly interactive event that
includes visionary keynotes, expert
panel discussions with input from
education leaders. This year’s event
provided participants with working
solutions, policy examples and
practical strategies, demonstrating
how the private sector, governments
and education systems can work
together to deliver engaging,
relevant and authentic education
experiences that will build stronger
economies and more cohesive
maltatoday, WEDNESDAY, 21 JULY 2010
Business Today Supplement
Vodafone collaborates with
the Royal Malta Yacht Club
Vodafone Malta has signed a collaboration agreement with the Royal
Malta Yacht Club (RMYC) in Ta’
Xbiex with the aim of supporting the
Club in its remit to organise races
and to provide fitness, recreation and
marine facilities to members. The
agreement was signed by George
Bonello DuPuis as Commodore of
the RMYC and by Business Marketing Manager Daniel Grech on
behalf of Vodafone Malta Ltd.“As a
country with a rich maritime history,
Malta has developed numerous facilities for sailing enthusiasts and established itself as an attractive yachting centre,” Bonello DuPuis said.
“On behalf of RMYC I would like
to thank Vodafone for the welcome
support that will help the Club hone
in on beneficial opportunities for its
members.”The RMYC is a private
yacht club that runs a wide variety
of action-packed racing throughout
the year as well as a comprehensive social calendar. Malta’s climate
provides near perfect sailing conditions throughout the year, ensuring
the Club is kept busy with initiatives all year round. The Club is a
favourite port of call for reciprocal
members from all over the world.
RMYC is the founding member of
the Malta Sailing Federation and is
deeply committed to maintaining
and strengthening the yachting tradition in Malta.Vodafone Malta will
be extending advantageous offers on
its high-end services and products
to RMYC who will in turn pass on
the benefits to its large member base.
The collaboration between the leading operator and the club is an initiative that fosters successful business
relationships among different stakeholders in Maltese industry.
George Bonello DuPuis and Daniel Grech
Government announces €150 million stock issue
Government has announced the
issue of €150 million in stocks.
In a statement, the government
treasury announced the following:
€100,000,000 Fixed Rate
subject to an over-allotment
option of an additional sum of
€50,000,000; and €30,000,000
Floating Rate Malta Government
Stock as follows:- 3.75% Malta
Government Stock 2015(VI)
Fungibility Issue, and 5.25%
Malta Government Stock 2030
(I), Fungibility Issue, or any
combination of the above
two Stocks which shall in the
aggregate be Euro 100,000,000;
and Floating Rate Malta
Government Stock 2013 (VI)
linked to the six month Euribor.
The offer price for each Stock
at (i) and (ii) above shall be
established on Thursday 29th
July, 2010. Such price shall
be announced to the Malta
Stock Exchange and published
in the daily local newspapers
and through a Press Release by
the Department of Information
Applications open on Monday
August 2, 2010 and close on the
time and dates as hereunder, or
earlier at the discretion of the
Accountant General: at 5.00pm
on Wednesday 4th August, 2010
for applications by any single
and/or joint applications which
in the aggregate do not exceed
€100,000 per person, and at
12:00 (noon) on FridayAugust 6,
2010 for applications in the form
of sealed bids (auction). The
allotment results of each stock
to applicants whose applicants
are in the form of sealed bids
(auction) will be determined
and announced within two hours
immediately after the closing
time of applications by auction.
Application forms may be
obtained from and lodged at,
all members of the Malta Stock
Exchange and other authorised
Investment Service Providers.
Application forms may also be
downloaded from the Treasury
More information on these
stocks can be found in the
relative prospectuses which
can be downloaded from the
Treasury website at www.
maltatoday, WEDNESDAY, 21 JULY 2010
Business Today Supplement
Calculating the Deficit
Mark Galea
ll EU Member States are required to
compile a set of tables reporting the
deficit of the General Government.
This deficit is worked out in line with
the procedure defined in the Maastricht
Treaty (Article 104). The basic conceptual reference framework for this
exercise is the Manual on Government
Deficit and Debt (2002 edition and subsequent updates), which is based on
the European System of National and
Regional Accounts (ESA 95). Compliance with the reference framework allows for the international comparability
of the data.
The Excessive Deficit Procedure
(EDP) Notification is carried out biannually, at the end of March, with an
update six months later. The September
exercise typically covers any new
information which becomes available.
Malta duly submits these notifications,
details of which are subsequently
published by Eurostat and the National
Statistics Office.
It is important to understand what
is defined by ‘General Government’.
The most obvious components are
the Ministries and Departments, and
the Local Councils. However, other
entities which depend on public funds
as their main source of revenue are
also included, depending on whether
they satisfy a set of criteria. The main
criterion for the sector boundary is the
50 per cent ratio, which shows whether
an institutional unit’s generated sales
cover at least half the production costs.
If the threshold is not reached, the unit
is classified as a non-market producer
within the General Government sector.
Other criteria, such as control and
ownership, are also taken into account.
In order to ensure transparency, the
list of such entities, known as ExtraBudgetary Units (EBUs), is made
Having identified which units
constitute the ‘General Government’
sector, a number of sequential
steps are required to arrive at the
consolidated figure of the sector’s
deficit. All Government Departments
and Ministries are required to report,
on a quarterly basis, financial data
in respect of outstanding payables
and receivables. In this way figures
relating to accrued revenue and
expenditure, creditors, deferred
payments, debtors and prepayments
are made available. The EBUs and
Local Councils are then individually
analysed and their audited financial
results are integrated with General
Government figures. Other steps
are the exclusion of financial
transactions from the consolidated
fund, and the inclusion of nonfinancial transactions from the
Increase in Treasury Bill rates
ECB Monetary Operations
On Monday, July 12, the ECB
announced its weekly MRO. The
auction was conducted on Tuesday,
July 13, and attracted bids from
euro area eligible counterparties
of €195.66 billion, €33.41 billion
less than the amount bid for in the
MRO held the previous week. The
bid amount was allotted in full,
at a fixed rate equivalent to the
prevailing main refinancing rate of
1.00 per cent, in accordance with
current ECB policy.
On Tuesday, July 13, the
ECB conducted a Special Term
Refinancing Operation (STRO)
with a maturity of 28 days. This
attracted bids of €49.40 billion,
with bids again being allotted in
full at a fixed rate equivalent to the
prevailing main refinancing rate of
1.00 per cent, in accordance with
current ECB policy.
On Tuesday, July 13, the ECB
also conducted an auction for a
seven-day, fixed-term deposit
intended to absorb €60 billion. The
operation was designed to sterilise
the effect of purchases made under
the Securities Market Programme
and settled by the previous Friday,
July 9. The auction was carried out
at a variable rate, with euro area
eligible counterparties allowed to
place up to two bids at a maximum
rate of 1.00 per cent. It attracted
bids amounting to €98.29 billion.
The ECB allotted the full intended
volume of €60 billion, or 61.04
per cent of the total amount bid for.
The marginal rate on the auction
was set at 0.65 per cent, with the
weighted average rate standing at
0.56 per cent.
On the same day, it being the end
of the reserve deposit maintenance
period, the ECB also conducted an
overnight Fine-tuning Liquidity
Absorbing Operation. This was
carried out at a variable rate, with
counterparties allowed to place up
to two bids at a maximum of 1.00
per cent. The operation attracted
bids for €201.67 billion, of which
the ECB accepted €200.91 billion,
or 99.62 per cent of the total amount
bid for. The marginal rate on this
operation was set at 0.80 per cent,
while the weighted average rate
was 0.76 per cent.
On Wednesday, July 14, the
ECB conducted a seven-day
US dollar funding operation
through collateralised lending in
conjunction with the US Federal
Reserve. The rate for the operation
was fixed at 1.19 per cent, but it did
not attract any bids.
Domestic Treasury Bill Market
Meanwhile, in the domestic
primary market for Treasury bills,
the Treasury invited tenders for
182-day bills maturing on January
14, 2011, and for 273-day bills
maturing on April 15, 2011. Bids
amounting to €89.5 million were
submitted for the 182-day bills,
with the Treasury accepting €26.05
million, while bids amounting
to €66 million were submitted
for the 273-day bills, with the
Treasury accepting €41 million.
Since €44.92 million worth of
bills matured during the week, the
outstanding balance of Treasury
bills increased by €22.14 million,
to stand at €588.60 million.
The yield resulting from the 182day bill auction was 0.819 per cent,
equivalent to yield on bills with a
similar tenor issued on July 9, 2010.
The yield on these bills represented
a bid price of 99.5877 per 100
nominal. The yield resulting from
the 273-day bill auction was 1.009
per cent, i.e. 9.1 basis points higher
than that on bills with a similar
tenor issued on July 2, 2010. The
yield on these bills represented
a bid price of 99.2407 per 100
During this week there was no
Treasury bill trading on the Malta
Stock Exchange.
On Tuesday the Treasury will
invite tenders for 91-day bills
maturing on October 22, 2010.
Treasury Clearance Fund.
A detailed inventory of the
methods, procedures and sources
used for the compilation of deficit
data, and the underlying government
sector accounts compiled according
to ESA95, is available on the NSO
The ultimate responsibility for
the deficit calculation rests with the
National Statistics Office. However,
cooperation with public financial
entities is a requisite for NSO in the
acquisition of data. This is in line
with best practices promoted by the
European Commission.
Mark Galea is manager of the
Public Finance unit at the National
Statistics Office.
FIMBank ranks among
top five factoring
institutions in global
FIMBank found itself in good company when it was recently recognised
as one of the world’s top five factoring institutions by the prestigious
Trade Finance Magazine, just behind
big names such as Citi, Deutsche
bank, HSBC and UniCredit Group.
Commenting on the placing,
Lütschg-Emmenegger said that:
“This news is a source of great
satisfaction to all of us at FIMBank.
As a global player focused on
delivering trade finance solutions
to businesses worldwide, factoring,
which is probably the fastest
growing Trade Finance product,
features prominently in the Bank’s
strategic development. The year
2009 was particularly important for
us in this regard, as it saw the setting
up of factoring operations in Russia
and India, FactorRus in Moscow
and India Factoring in Mumbai, in
partnership with major international
financial players”.
João Costa Pereira, FIMBank
First Vice-President and Head of
Mediterranean Factors, stated that:
“Factoring is taking on an increasingly
important role in international trade,
as more and more importers demand
open account conditions rather than
letters of credit. This is particularly
relevant with regard to exports
from emerging markets to the more
developed ones. The recent crisis has
brought about more awareness about
factoring and this product’s ability to
facilitate domestic and international
trade while mitigating risks.”
FIMBank’s credentials in providing
support to factoring joint-ventures
are certainly not in question. FIM
Business Solutions Ltd, a fullyowned subsidiary of the FIMBank
Group, was last year awarded ISO
9001:2008 certification for the
company’s factoring back office
operations. On the occasion of the
award, Ms Lütschg Emmenegger
had commented that: “Whenever
we set up a factoring JV with a
local partner, FIMBank enters as
the technical partner providing its
expertise. The achievement of ISO
certification for our factoring backoffice operations is an important
endorsement of the quality of these
services as well as recognition of the
professionalism of our people.” It
is also no coincidence that in 2009,
FIMBank plc had been recognised
as ‘Best Factoring House’ by another
international journal, Global Trade
Review (GTR).
Business Today Supplement
maltatoday, WEDNESDAY, 21 JULY 2010
Pensions reform: a nation’s tale
Julia Otto
Last Monday PKF Malta hosted the
seminar “EU...Urging a Pension Reform” which focused on various topics.
The seminar brought the main stakeholders together to discuss and analyse
the current situation, to objectively assess pension reform and examine the
options that are open to government,
unions, and the private sector alike. The
event was opened by Hon. Dr Spiteri
on behalf of Hon. Dolores Cristina.
David Spiteri Gingell, who was
chairman of the Pensions Working
Group between 2004 and 2007,
described the changes in demographics
which will pervasively impact a PAYG
Pensions System. He emphasized
that Malta’s population is dying
because people are living longer and
birthrates are declining. According to
his presentation based on EU figures
the fertility rates declined from 3.5 in
1960 to 1.5 children born per woman
in 2008. In contrast the life expectancy
was at 80 years in 2008. In 2050, 33%
of the females and 31% of the males
will be above 60. The AWG total
population scenario, which results from
assumptions pertaining fertility rates,
life expectancy and net immigration
shows a decline to 405,000 in 2060.
Dependency Ratio falls from 1:4 in
2005 to 1:1.5 in 2050. According to
him Malta need to start taking into
account the following options: more
births, more female participation,
immigration, increase retirement age,
link retirement age with a longevity
index, mitigate demographic risk by
complementing the PAYG with a 2nd
The Head of the Economics
Department of the University of
Malta, Dr. Gordon Cordina, was more
optimistic and argued that a higher life
expectancy, a strong health as well as
woman who prefer a career instead of
having a child should not be seen as
something negative. According to him
on balance, the system has not become
any more or less affordable, but the
risks have increased. At this stage,
the emphasis should be on increasing
the robustness of the pension system
to risks. He suggested the following
three possible methods to increase
the robustness of the PAYG system:
The retirement age should be indexed
to life expectancy. Furthermore,
increases in pension rates should keep
the change in pension expenditure
equal to that in contributions, subject
to there being no reduction in the
purchasing power of pensions.
Altering contribution rates, with a
possible significant rise in the share of
pension expenditure in the economy,
is ultimately counterproductive to
economic growth and the sustainability
of the PAYG system itself. All in all he
took the view that the present system
should remain but has to be constantly
sustained through economic growth
and a stronger participation of people
in the working life. However, he also
outlined that a funded pension system
may improve adequacy of the pension
system, because a funded system is
long-term as it is based on the capital
Charles Mangion, MLP Shadow
Minister of Finance and Economic
Affairs, claimed that there were no
substantive changes introduced except
for the determining of the minimum
pension to 60% of median income,
which incidentally is the threshold
that demarcates the risk of poverty.
After Lehman bankruptcy and the
financial crisis the government decided
that it would not be wise to introduce
a second pillar of the pension, as
recommended by the Pensions
Working Group. He highlighted that
a comprehensive pension reform to
improve sustainability and adequacy of
the pension system is an urgent matter
and cannot be any longer postponed.
Carmel Mallia, speaking for the
National Association of Pensioners,
complained that in the reform the
adequacy of pensions was not
addressed. He emphasized that the gap
between income from employment
and pensions is becoming larger.
He outlined that changes in pension
Carmel Mallia, speaking for the National Association of Pensioners, complained that in the reform the adequacy of pensions was not
systems must be handled with care and addressed
that Europe must help to address the
growing citizens concerns about the presentation “EU Green Paper between work and retirement,
safety of future pensions. A strategy on retirement age and the local
• facilitate a longer active life,
According to him there are
can be defined to put pensions on context” that any new system or
• removal of obstacles to EU- different ways how the government
an adequate and sustainable base change to the current Pay-As- wide employment and to the can help encourage people to save
including through better use of EU You-Go (PAYG) model needs to internal market for retirement money. The life insurance industry
level instruments.
set in. Local Business community products,
in Malta grew rapidly during the
The conference was also attended by needs to plan ahead and the
• ensure transparency, and
last years: €193 million were
representatives of constitutes bodies. Malta Chamber would like this
• safer pensions.
collected in 2009, while payouts
Gejtu Vella (UHM) reminded that the matter to be discussed at MCESD
According to Ellul the Malta amounted to €70 million. There
reform has an impact on human beings level. Accordingly, Ellul linked Chamber agrees with the guiding are 130,000 saving contracts and
rather than numbers. Victor Carachi the discussion in Malta to that principles of the Green Paper
total investments amounts to
(GWU) highlighted that it is difficult launched by the EU with its recent
But details of such a debate €1,385 million of which 62 per
for people over 50 to find a job and that Green Paper. This Paper reviews should be left to local and national cent are invested in Malta.
consequently those people are pushed the European pension framework stakeholders. Furthermore, she
Finally, the closure of the
to early retirement. Joe Farrugia (MEA) and focuses on areas like pension
encourage event was done by Parliamentary
took the view that that a first pillar is mobility across the EU and longer immigrants, women, unemployed Secretary Chris Said on behalf
not enough to ensure sustainability, but working lives. The main aims are
youths and the elderly to work of the Prime Minister, Lawrence
he challenged whether a second pillar
• ensure adequate incomes in through flexible work options.
is required.
retirement through long-term
David Curmi, from Middlesea
Helga Ellul (Chamber of Commerce, sustainable pension systems,
Valetta Life Assurance, addressed
Julia Otto
Enterprise and Industry) argued in her
• achieve the right balance the third pillar, which is voluntary
Law and Finance researcher
maltatoday, WEDNESDAY, 21 JULY 2010
Business Today Supplement
Big Bon Group launches
new logo as re-branding
exercise gets underway
The Big Bon Group which knows
its origins in 1950 when it started
operating in the local textile industry, is launching a new corporate
logo. This is the first important
milestone in the Group’s re-branding exercise which is currently underway.
Over the years the Big Bon
Group kept evolving and at the
same time surviving the challenges
and fast changes that characterize
this sector. The strength and the
experience achieved, enabled the
company to introduce a number of
international brands to Malta and
set up a netword of outlets across
the Maltese islands. Despite the
constant challenges, the group
always represented a sense of
stability and vision.
“It is this stability and vision that
we wanted to portray in the new
logo which as it is now, represents
all the main elements that define
our organization,” says Managing
Director Bernard Gauci. “In fact, the
logo reflects an organization which
is always ready to look beyond its
current operation towards creating
new opportunities for growth.”
The logo is clearly characterized
by four distinct pebble-like forms
in four different colours which
represent the Group’s main areas of
operations namely green, orange,
turquoise and purple. Green stands
for Big Bon Family which gathers
all the retail activity which up to
now was recognized under the
Bossini brand, orange represents
the Big Bon Living and includes
the activity taking place under the
Carmelo Delia brand, turquoise
represents the Big Bon Franchising
business through the various
franchising brands represented in
Malta whilst the purple represents
the Big Bon Manufacturing
The design of the new logo
and the re-branding exercise are
being coordinated by Corporate
Identities, a PR, Media Relations
and Brand Management company
which specialises in sustaining its
clients’ brand equity, marketing
and corporate communications.
Jesmond Saliba from Corporate
Identities said, “in our presented
designs, we proposed a concept of
four forms looking outwards, thus
reflecting the Group’s ambitious
vision for constant growth and
expansion. The Group is aware
that being able to look beyond its
current operations would have
never been possible if first it hadn’t
consolidated these four specific
areas of operations. These will
always be the core activities of
the group to new future ventures.
The Big Bon brand, on the other
hand has a strong equity which we
believe has became a household
name reflection quality and value
for their customers.” The creative
side was handled by Ramon
“Just as every challenge comes
accompanied by an opportunity, so
was our project for a new re-branding
exercise,” adds Mario Camilleri,
General Manager of the Big Bon
Group. “To us, the challenge in redefining the Big Bon brand meant
a thorough re-assessment of where
our organization presently stands
and placing it in today’s context so
that both management and staff can
understand where we are today and
where we want to go tomorrow. Now
however, this re-branding exercise
also turns out to be an opportunity
to show how our organization has
diversified throughout the years
and what led to it becoming one of
Malta’s leading companies in the
retail and franchise business.”
The next step in Big Bon Group’s
re-branding exercise will be the
launch of a new website which
is currently being designed in
the form of an online corporate
brochure with detailed information
about all the Group’s main areas
of operations and all represented
brands. This will be followed by the
completion in the rebranding of all
the Big Bon Family outlets around
Malta including the one in Gozo in
line with the new image.
FinanceMalta launches third podcast
In a bid to reach as many investors as
possible, FinanceMalta, the publicprivate partnership set up to promote
Malta as an IFC (International Financial Centre) will be streaming a
new podcast on its website shortly.
This follows a FinanceMalta podcast
on Banking in Malta with Dr Pierre
Mifsud from EMD Advocates and another on fund business in Malta with
Dermot Butler, Chairman of Custom
House Global Fund Services Limited.
FinanceMalta’s latest podcast features
an interview between Dr. Christian
Pisani, a German lawyer from Müller
& Pisani in Munich, and Joseph Cutajar, Managing Director of the MIB
Insurance Group. This podcast will
outline the scope, expertise and opportunity to be found in Malta’s insurance market where the incoming
investor can secure and insure operations in Malta whether his operations
are focused on North Africa, Europe
or beyond.
FinanceMalta’s latest podcast will
discuss Malta as a mature insurance
market with a sophisticated level of
development and a full supporting
structure including the big 4
accounting firms, expert legal firms,
banks and insurance structures.
Malta’s human resources support both
general insurance and niche expertise.
The country is closely linked to
international markets, particularly
the UK and the City of London and
is aligned with the London market for
insurance and reinsurance purposes.
Generally, Malta enjoys lower HR
costs than competing jurisdictions. It
also enjoys lower peripheral set-up
costs and has the added convenience
of those regulatory issues being
handled by a formally regulated
framework. Malta is popular with
many international companies who
choose to set up here. It is a jurisdiction
of choice given the high standards of
regulation, the proximity to the North
Africa market and the passporting
advantages that allow international
entities, once licensed in Malta, full
access to European markets. Given
its close ties to the African continent
(North Africa is only 45 minutes
flight time), Malta provides a unique
level of access. It has an extensive
legacy of operations with these North
African markets including a doubletaxation agreement with Libya. Apart
from these services, Malta offers a
broad range of value-added brokering
services, providing insurance solutions
together with risk management as
well as options on alternative risk
mechanisms. The broking market
has been growing for over 30 years
now, offering a flexible approach
from regulator to operators with ICC
structures, captives and PCCs.
The Chairman of FinanceMalta,
Kenneth Farrugia, said, “This is just
one of the many initiatives that aims
to reach as many potential investors
as possible using a variety of media
outlets. The partnership we have with
private industry makes this type of
project a reality.” The FinanceMalta
podcasts are available in the
Multimedia segment of the Gallery
section through the FinanceMalta
maltatoday, WEDNESDAY, 21 JULY 2010
Business Today Supplement
Markets / News
Defusing the time bomb
Weekly international investment round up to 20th July 2010
For us men who haven’t yet hit their
late-forties, a couple of inconvenient
truths. Barring the unforeseen,
while we can hope to live to the
average age of 77 at best we can
only now expect to start receiving
a government pension from the age
of 65. And for women of a similar
generation, while 82 should be
achievable their retirement age is
now the same as ours.
Furthermore, without a radical
rethink of how the state actually
provides its pensions the chances are
that what we eventually receive will
be significantly less in real terms
than we probably expect. At this
point, shrugging our shoulders and
stopping reading any further about
the ongoing Pension ticking time
bomb debate is usually forgivable
but this time it’s different, for two
First, circumstances have conspired
so that we now have a great chance
to influence and shape the direction
of our future pension plans and
secondly, as investors, we need to
take in to account how Europe is
going to tackle what is probably its
next greatest financial challenge.
The financial crisis has served to
lift the carpet on the Everest sized
issue of state pensions which had
previously been swept beneath it for
• Unsustainable state pensions
under the spot-light
• Individuals urged to get involved
in the debate
go) system forms the bedrock of
state pensions across Europe and it
is simply unsustainable. Operated
by individual governments, these
schemes pay today’s pensioners by
the tax generated by that country’s
working generation. The European
Commission estimates that over the
next 50 years instead of today’s ratio
of four workers to one retired person
there will only be two employee’s
available to pay the pensions of
those in society aged 65 and over.
GAP welcomes
MEPA approval to
Fort Cambridge
GAP Developments plc, developers the multi-awarded Fort Cambridge residential development,
have received today the official
approval from the Malta Environment and Planning Authority for
the restoration of Fort Cambridge
in Sliema. The development permit for the restoration of the Fort,
which received unanimous approval by MEPA board, will recover the external appearance of
the battery and restore it to its
original state.
The fort forms part of the GAP
project of the same name, which
includes a residential complex
that is fast becoming one of the
most sough-after addresses in the
Mediterranean. The pentagonshaped Fort Cambridge dates back
to the 1880’s. Indeed, construction
of the Victorian fortification
began in 1879 and was finished
in 1898. Fort Cambridge is one
of a pair, twinned with Fort
Rinella in Kalkara, which has a
similar design. Both forts housed
one of the 3 famous 100-ton
coastal guns, which required a
gun crew of 35 and which Fort
Cambridge was specifically built
to accommodate.
The fort has already had all
“additions” removed, including a
swimming pool and a restaurant,
and its restoration will be done
by a team from TBA Periti, under
the supervision of architect Alex
Torpiano. The architects and the
developers plan to restore the
Stock markets
well over a decade and, if not now
fixed, could easily stall growth in the
region for years to come.
As in Malta, governments
throughout Europe face a huge state
pension funding problem which
has been compounded by slowing
economic growth and exasperated
by demographics.
The current PAYG (pay-as-you-
Fort to its olden glory, paying
particular attention to those details
that are considered “the soul” of
the fortification. The architects in
fact were able to get plans of the
original fort from British military
At the same time GAP will seek
to instill a new breath of life into
the historic site, such that it can be
adequately used. MEPA’s Planning
Directorate, while recommending
the project’s approval, included a
condition specifying that MEPA
was not opposed, in principle, to
any usage compatible with the
A spokesperson for GAP said
that “we welcome the issuing of
this development permit by MEPA
which shows the commitment the
company is showing towards the
national heritage. Notwithstanding
that GAP’s contractual obligation
to restore Fort Cambridge is
within a 10 year period, the
company is factually showing
that the restoration of Fort
Cambridge is an integral part of
the development and will be done
within the same time frames of the
apartments. Fort Cambridge not
only has historic value, but indeed
also architectural and aesthetic
value which was being lost to time
and abandonment. GAP will now
ensure that this piece of Maltese
heritage, which belongs to the
Maltese people, can be enjoyed
in all its glory by the very same
Maltese people.”
wks chg
Euro STOXX 50
Dax (Frankfurt)
FTSE 100
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Shanghai CSI 300
Mumbai (BSE)
Here in Malta, projected population
figures show we may actually be
worse off than this EU average.
With a falling birth rate, Malta is a
shrinking nation.
However, following the 2006
Pension reforms Malta was at least
in-part ahead of our European
neighbours in recognising such risks
resulting in the raising of the pension
age for those born after 1/1/1962
to age 65. Further reforms are now
being worked upon representing an
opportunity for us all to voice our
opinion. The EU is also currently
calling for our views on how best to
create conditions for a sustainable
Dow Jones Ind. Avg
Mark Lamb
[email protected]
CAC 40 (Paris)
pension system through their Green
Paper discussion document, we
should all try to make an active
As investors, we need to recognise
that across Europe public debt has
exploded while, when compared
to just a couple of years, projected
growth in the region has contracted.
Faith in Europe as an institution
has been seriously rocked with
its failings probably not yet fully
exposed therefore; placing further
un-wavering blind trust in their
judgement is probably, at best,
misplaced. The current pensions
debate gives us all an opportunity to
take ownership of our future and we
should take it.
Mark Lamb is Head of the Life Dept. at
Citadel Insurance plc which is authorized to carry on general and long term
business of insurance under the Insurance Business Act, 1998 and is regulated by the MFSA. Contact by email;
[email protected] Tel; 25579000.
This article does not intend to give investment advice and its contents should
not be construed as such. Information
in this article has been obtained from
various public sources and is given by
way of information only. Readers are
always encouraged to seek financial
advice before making any investment
Ireland manages to
raise €1.5 billion
Downtown Dublin, Ireland
Ireland announced yesterday that
it had raised €1.5 billion through a
heavily over-subscribed issue of six
and 10-year bonds just a day after
Moody’s had downgraded Irish sovereign debt.
The government public debt agency,
the NTMA, said it had placed bonds
worth €750 million euros coming
due in 2016, with demand 3.6 times
greater than the amount sought.
The bonds carried a yield of 4.496
percent, down from 4.521 percent at
a similar previous operation.
The government also placed 10year bonds worth €750 million
euros, 3.1 times over-subscribed,
at a rate of 5.537 percent, which
compared with 4.688 percent at a
previous issue.
Ratings agency Moody’s on
Monday lowered Ireland’s sovereign
debt rating by one notch to Aa2,
citing weak growth prospects and the
cost of bank rescues.
It described its outlook on Ireland
as “stable.”
Pokerstars to host events at Portomaso
The Portomaso Casino announced
it reached an agreement with the
world’s number one online poker
operator ‘Pokerstars’ to host a series
of top international events. The first
event, the IPT (Italian Poker Tour),
shall be held in November this year
and is expected to attract hundreds
of top International poker players to
measure their skills in Malta over
ten days of intense competition.
Other significant appointments for
the 2011 will be scheduled and announced soon! Gianfranco Scordato, General Manager at the Casino
confirmed this news and added:
“This agreement finally puts Malta
and the Portomaso Casino on the
calendar of the most important circuit in Europe.” Malta is becoming
more and more a key location for
quality poker events, well known
within the international landscape.
Over a short period of time this
skill game has attracted thousands
of tourists to Malta, representing
an important contribution to the
overall “spin off” economy… this
agreement promises to further expand this niche.
maltatoday, WEDNESDAY, 21 JULY 2010
Business Today Supplement
Euro rises above US$1.30
The euro briefly topped US$1.30
yesterday, nearing a 10-week
high point as the US currency was
plagued by renewed concerns over
the US economic outlook.
In early trading, the shared
eurozone unit struck 1.3029, the
highest point since May 10. It later
pulled back to US$1.2976, up from
US$1.2943 in New York late on
Against the Japanese currency,
the dollar increased to 86.90 yen
from 86.68 yen on Monday.
The dollar slid after Monday’s
pessimistic report on the US
home-building industry added to
concerns that economic recovery
in the world’s largest economy
could stall.
Sterling was pushed lower by
disappointing British government
borrowing data.
The pound sank to 1.5155 dollars
in late morning deals, hitting the
lowest point since July 13.
British public sector borrowing
was higher than expected in June,
official data showed yesterday, in
a blow to the UK government’s
hopes of slashing its huge public
On the London Bullion Market,
the price of gold firmed to
US$1,181.73 an ounce from
US$1,181 an ounce on Monday.
UK public deficit higher than expected in June
The UK’s public sector borrowing
was higher than expected in June,
official data showed yesterday, in a
blow to Prime Minister David Cameron’s government’s hopes of slashing the huge public deficit.
The public deficit, stood at GBP14.5
billion, the Office for National
Statistics (ONS) said in a statement.
The reading was higher than market
expectations for a deficit of GBP13.5
billion, but was a slight improvement
from GBP14.7 billion in June 2009.
The ONS added that the public
sector net cash requirement (PSNCR)
-- an alternative measure of public
finances -- expanded last month to
show a deficit of GBP0.9 billion,
compared with GBP20.2 billion in
June 2009.
Chancellor George Osborne last
month unveiled higher taxation
and spending cuts in an emergency
budget aimed at narrowing the
nation’s enormous public deficit.
Democrat coalition which took
power after a general election in
May inherited a record GBP154.7
billion deficit from the previous
labour government headed by
Gordon Brown.
The goal is to reduce the shortfall
to GBP37 billion in 2014-2015 and
to GBP20 billion in 2015-2016.
Honda to have electric Greece raises
cars by 2012
€1.95 billion
Honda announced yesterday that it
would roll out an electric car and plugin hybrids in Japan and the United
States in 2012 as it tries to catch up
in the race to make clean, batterypowered cars.
Japan’s number-two carmaker had
previously been sceptical of plugin hybrids but now plans to launch
a compact electric car and mid and
large-sized plug-in hybrids capable of
up to 60 kilometres per litre (140 miles
per gallon) of petrol.
The plug-ins have been a pet project
of Takanobu Ito, who headed Honda’s
research and development section
before becoming chief executive in
June last year.
“The next 10 years will be very critical
for Honda to survive in the midst of
major changes, at a time of increased
environmental awareness and changes
in the global economic structure,” Ito
said at a press conference.
Details of the cars will be released
only at the end of the year.
But the announcement that Honda
will embrace the technology signals a
turnaround in the company’s vision. In
2007, then-president Takeo Fukui said
that plug-in hybrids offered too few
environmental benefits to be worth
“Mr Fukui did not like batteries,
but I am different,” Ito said. “Now,
as president, I have accelerated this
Plug-in hybrids share technology
with standard hybrids -- of which
Honda already produces several
models, including a version of its
Civic -- but can be recharged using a
household power point.
Honda said it planned to start
producing a high-output lithium-ion
battery this year through a joint venture
with GS Yuasa and would also harness
technology from its prototype fuel-cell
car to develop its all-electric car.
The company will also start operation
in 2013 of a new plant at Yorii in the
Tokyo suburbs that was put on hold
due to the global financial crisis. The
plant will develop new technologies
for low-emission cars, Ito said.
The launch of the green vehicles
is timed to meet tough regulations,
including a new rule in California that
will require three percent of a car
maker’s sales in the state to be zeroemission vehicles from 2012.
Honda will also expand its line-up
of standard hybrid models next year,
Ito said. The company will introduce
the Fit hybrid in Japan this year and
the next-generation Civic hybrid in
The Japanese government aims by
2020 to raise the share of hybrids in
the country from 10 percent now to
20-30 percent, and to have plug-in
hybrids and electric cars account for
up to 20 percent of sales.
Toyota’s Prius hybrid, helped by
government subsidies, has been
the best-selling car in Japan for
over a year. Toyota sold more than
270,000 Prius vehicles in the fiscal
year 2009. Honda sold 100,000 of
its petrol-engine Insights.
Nissan, Japan?s third-largest
automaker, is set to take the lead in
mass-producing fully electric cars
with lithium-ion batteries when
it releases its Leaf later this year
in Japan, the United States and
Greece said yesterday that it had raised
€1.95 billion with an issue of threemonth bonds carrying a rate of 4.05
percent, more than the €1.5 billion initially targeted. The issue has reportedly
been over-subscribed and Athens has
expressed satisfaction at having borrowed €1.95 billion at a rate of 4.05
percent with an option to 450 million
more by Thursday.Greece on July 13
raised fresh funds from the markets in
a first sale of government debt since an
EU-IMF bailout saved it from default.
But it had to sweeten the deal to attract
Athens sold €1.625 billion in sixmonth treasury bills at a rate of return
of 4.65 percent, slightly higher than an
equivalent sale in April, the Greek debt
management agency (PDMA) said.
The European debt market has been
influenced by the intervention of
the European Central Bank, which
has agreed to buy bonds issued
by financially troubled eurozone
economies such as Greece, on the
secondary market from banks holding
previous issues.
But the ECB has now reduced its
purchases of eurozone government
bonds, data released last week showed.
The measure was introduced as part
of a package of moves to reduce
tensions on eurozone government
debt markets.
ECB figures indicated that that the
bank spent one billion euros in the
first week of July to buy government
In each of the preceding three
weeks, the ECB had bought roughly
four billion euros’ worth of sovereign
bonds on secondary markets, that is,
not directly from governments.
maltatoday, WEDNESDAY, 21 JULY 2010
MaltaToday, MediaToday Co. Ltd, Vjal ir-Rihan, San Gwann SGN 9016
Tel: (356) 21 382741-3, 21 382745-6 • Fax: (356) 21 385075
Website: E-mail: [email protected]
Human dumping on the high seas
News that a boatload of Somali asylum seekers was somehow ‘shared out’
between Maltese and Libyan search and
rescue personnel while still at sea, should
make for deeply disconcerting reading.
For one thing, it is suspicious that both
the Armed Forces of Malta (which coordinated the rescue operation) and the
Office of the Prime Minister (which is
politically responsible for the AFM) have
to date been so reticent on the matter.
So far, only the basic sequence of events
can be ascertained.
Over the weekend, the AFM received
a distress call from a rubber dinghy
carrying 55 Somalis, including women
and children, in the Maltese Search and
Rescue area approximately 44 nautical
miles south of Malta.
A patrol boat was duly dispatched to
the scene, only to find that a Libyan
flagged, Italian manned coast guard vessel had arrived at roughly the same time.
This vessel is understood to be one of
six Italian ‘motovedette’ loaned to the
Libyan government as part of the ‘Treaty
of Friendship, Partnership and Co-operation’ signed between the two countries
in August 2008.
What followed was a mysterious ‘transaction’ on the high seas, which resulted
in 28 of the 55 individuals being brought
to Malta by the AFM, while the remaining 27 were escorted back to Libya by
Italian coastguards working for the
Libyan authorities.
At a glance this appears to be a highly
unusual procedure, and one cannot help
being uncomfortably reminded of the
notorious ‘concentration camp’ tactics
used by past regimes, to arbitrarily
decide who gets to be granted freedom,
and who on the other hand gets sent to a
labour camp (or worse).
Unfortunately, the comparison becomes a little too close for comfort when
one also bears in mind that Libya has
not signed the 1951 Geneva Convention,
and has very recently expelled the United
Nations High Commission for Refugees.
As a result, there is no competent body
present in Libya to monitor the human
rights situation on the ground.
Furthermore, Amnesty International’s
annual country report for Libya, published last month, makes for very grim
reading: “AI continues to receive reports
that torture or other ill-treatment [takes]
place in Libya in a climate of virtually
total impunity… Those carrying out the
abuses include police officers and detention centre guards. The victims include
prisoners under sentence of death, refugees, asylum-seekers and migrants.”
The report goes on to say: “In recent
years, the most frequently reported
methods have been: beatings; beatings
on the soles of the feet (falaqa); the use of
electric shocks; being suspended by the
arms; and the deliberate denial of medical treatment.”
Moreover, Libya has all too often
been accused of violating the principle
of ‘refoulement’, by forcibly deporting
migrants back to countries where their
lives may be at risk, without securing any
guarantees that their basic rights will be
Somalis and Eritreans are currently
high on the list of priority asylum specifically because of the unstable status of
the war-torn countries. Deportation to
their home countries is therefore not an
acceptable option.
And yet, in this particular case,
the migrants all claim to be Somali
nationals: a claim which automatically entitles them to be considered as
‘potential asylum seekers’, according
to international conventions to which
Malta is signatory.
The AFM was therefore duty bound
to recognize this claim and to bring
them to a safe port of call where their
application for asylum could have been
For reasons outlined above, Libya
does not qualify as a safe port for
For these and other reasons, it is
scarcely acceptable that a group of
asylum seekers could be arbitrarily
divided as part of a ‘deal’ struck at
sea, with the ‘unlucky half’ forcibly
returned to Libya, while the rest are
granted sanctuary in an EU member
Among the questions to which we are
still awaiting answers are the following:
Who took the decision to divide the
migrants into two groups? On what
criteria were roughly half of the asylum
seekers brought to Malta, while the
others were sent back to Libya?
The commanding officer of an AFM
patrol boat is unlikely to possess the
authority necessary to undertake such
an operation on his own initiative. So
who authorized the procedure, and was
any ‘screening’ conducted to ascertain
the migrants’ eligibility to asylum?
As things stand, the only comment
we have received to date from the Office of the Prime Minister was that the
deported asylum seekers had ‘voluntarily’ accepted to be escorted back to
But this is at best implausible, especially when one considers that in most
cases, asylum seekers crossing the
Mediterranean would have taken considerable risks and spent considerable
sums of money to pay human traffickers for their passage to Europe.
A return to Libya under these circumstances would nullify all those efforts and expenses, while also exposing
them to risk of human rights violations and (arguably worse, from the
migrants’ point of view) deportation to
their country of origin.
A detailed explanation of Malta’s
involvement in this unsavoury incident
would therefore not be entirely amiss.
maltatoday, WEDNESDAY, 21 JULY 2010
Melita announces new sports channels
FROM Saturday 7 August,
Melita television subscribers
will have free access to five new
sports channels: Malta Stars,
Football Stars 1, Football Stars
2, ALL Stars and ALL Stars
All Melita L and XL TV subscribers will be able to access
Malta Stars for free with broadcasts of local sporting events
such as Malta’s BOV Premier
League, Malta football international games, water polo, boxing, a new in-house production
with daily sports news updates
and more.
In addition to free access to
Malta Stars, Melita XL TV
subscribers will also have free
access to Football Stars 1, Football Stars 2, ALL Stars and ALL
Stars HD. Football Stars 1 and
Football Stars 2 will provide
live coverage of international
football such as the Spanish
Primera Liga, Bundesliga, the
Carling Cup, Bayern Munich
TV, Barca TV amongst other
international matches.
ALL Stars offers a wide vari-
ety of international sports including WWE Wrestling, TNA
Wrestling, NBA basketball
matches, Red Bull Events, Boxing and many more.
Several sports events will continue to be broadcast in high
definition and will be made
available as part of the standard package to all those subscribed to the Melita Netbox
HD. ALL Stars HD offers free
access to one live broadcast in
HD at a time of the best sporting events carried on Malta
Stars, Football Stars 1, Football
Stars 2 and ALL Stars.
Melita also launched an additional Sports package consisting of 9 Premium Channels dedicated to top football
leagues covering all UEFA
Champions League games,
UEFA Europa League games,
Copa Libertadores, and highlights from other top leagues.
This football package will be
offered from as little as €9.99
a month with free HD access
to the broadcast of Champions
league games and other international football matches on
Melita Sports HD (High Definition) for all customers enjoying a Melita Netbox.
The Premium Package is being
offered for only €9.99 a month
for all those subscribers who
register by the 30th September 2010 and committing to a
year of service. Thereafter, the
price for the Premium Package
will remain at €9.99/month for
L and XL TV subscribers and
€12.99 for M subscribers, or
all those opting for a month on
month service.
Your apartment is waiting to be viewed!
from BRITO’s (www.aabrito.
com) Nagare Collection, while
a Linear Matrix kitchen all in
high gloss white was supplied
by Meldoy Cucine ( The focal
point in the living area is the
white leather 3 seater with a
chaislounge model London,
by Alpa Salotti of Altamura
Italy (
The newly launched bedroom model by Welle (welle.
com) model Lavaza, which
was recently in on display
at the IMM in Cologne, was
used for the main bedroom,
accompanied by a spare bedroom from Iranzo (Iranzo.
R Living – Mriehel By-pass,
Qormi. T: 21 499 699; E: [email protected]
Pendergardens - St. Julian’s
T: 22488600.; E: [email protected]
PENDERGARDENS have recently launched their latest
showflat in block 15. R Living
of Mriehel Bypass Qormi, have
been entrusted as the sole furniture supplier, while the interior design was in the hands of
Greta Apap Bologna of Greta
Apartment 1521 is a twobedroom apartment, which
has been completed to the
highest standards and specifications. The apartment offers the latest in stylish living,
whilst still retaining comfort
and that “homely” feel.
In line with the latest trends,
the furniture selected, showed
minimal designs as well as
a combination of full high
polish in white lacquer and
wood finish in grey oak.
Keeping in mind the beauty,
elegance and style of the property, the furniture in living
and dining area was selected
maltatoday, WEDNESDAY, 21 JULY 2010
NATO to withdraw from
Afghanistan as allies
rethink ‘failed’ strategy
AFGHAN president Hamid Karzai has called for NATO withdrawal from Afghanistan by 2014.
He was speaking in front of more
than 40 foreign ministers at a conference to set a tentative timetable
for Kabul to take the lead in building and securing Afghanistan.
Opening the Kabul international conference – the first of its
kind to be held in Afghanistan
in recent decades - Karzai said:
“I remain determined that our
Afghan national security forces
will be responsible for all military
and law enforcement operations
throughout our country by 2014.”
The handover process could begin as soon as next year.
The conference, held amid tight
security in the Afghan capital, set
the beginnings of a transition allowing foreign troops to switch
from the front line to training
roles as the Afghan army and police grows.
It also coincides with reports
that Washington may be reconsidering its strategy in Afghanistan, as military strategists argue
for some kind of negotiations with
the Taliban.
The conference has been billed
as the beginning of a “Kabul process” which will see Afghanistan
weaning itself from international
dependence and given a greater
say in how donor money is spent.
After eight years of ineffective
government, the event is seen as a
critical chance for Hamid Karzai
to win over his own disillusioned
He promised legislation to cut
rampant corruption and a communiqué will announce targets
for growing agriculture, the economy, education and reforming the
civil service.
Mr Karzai also wants to increase
the amount of aid money being
controlled by the Afghan government to rise to 50 per cent from
the current 20 per cent.
Liam Fox, Defence Secretary,
said at the weekend that British
troops were scheduled to leave
the front lines by 2014.
William Hague, Foreign Secretary, told the conference the province-by-province handover to Afghan troops should be “gradual
and determined by Afghan
capacity, but should be able to
start soon.” He said any solution to the eight-year-long insurgency required a “just and
inclusive political settlement”.
Britain has 9,500 troops in
Afghanistan and has lost 322
since operations began in 2001.
Casualty rates have acceler-
ated in the past 18 months.
Barack Obama has previously said American troops numbers would start to gradually
reduce from July 2011.
Hillary Clinton, American
secretary of state, told the
conference the July 2011 date
“captures both our sense of urgency and the strength of our
“The transition process is too
important to push off indefinitely.
“But this date is the start of
a new phase, not the end of
our involvement. We have no
intention of abandoning our
long-term mission of achieving a stable, secure, peaceful
She gave support to a plan
to coax 36,000 fighters to lay
down their arms if they “renounce violence and al Qaeda”, but said any peace settlement must not sacrifice the
rights of women who faced
repression under the Taliban
Ireland recognises same-sex unions
THE Republic of Ireland has
passed legislation recognizing
unions between same-sex couples on an equal footing with
The Civil Partnership Bill,
which provides legal recognition for same-sex couples in
the largely Catholic country,
was signed into law on Monday
President Mary McAleese at
Áras an Uachtaráin.
It extends marriage-like benefits to gay and lesbian couples
in the areas of property, social
welfare, succession, maintenance, pensions and tax.
The act also offers additional
rights and protections for other
cohabiting couples, including a
redress scheme for financially
dependent long-term cohabitants on the end of a relationship.
Announcing the signing of
the Bill today, Minister for Justice Dermot Ahern described it
as “one of the most important
pieces of civil rights legislation
to be enacted since independence.”
“This Act provides enhanced
rights and protections for
many thousands of Irish men
and women. Ireland will be a
better place for its enactment,”
he said.
“It is of tremendous social significance, for the couples who
can now register as partners,
for their friends and families
- ultimately, for all of us,” Mr
Ahern added.
Changes to the tax and social
welfare code will be made in
the next finance and social welfare Bills. The Civil Partnership
and Certain Rights and Obligations of Cohabitants Act 2010
is expected to be commenced
when those changes take effect.
The first civil registrations for
same-sex couples are likely to
take place early next year.
The Bill was approved by
the Seanad by 48 votes to 4 at
6.30pm on Friday 9 July, having
completed its passage though
the Dáil the previous week.
The legislation was widely supported in both the Dáil and
The Green Party this afternoon welcomed the singing
into law of the Bill.
“Today is a good day for all
Irish citizens. This Act is a
significant step forward and a
stepping stone towards greater
equality in our society, said
the party’s justice spokesman
Irish President Mary McAleese
Trevor Sargent.
“I look forward to the first
ceremonies that will be held
under this Act from next Janu-
ary. They mark an important
venture for our society for
which we have waited far too
long,” he added.
maltatoday, WEDNESDAY, 21 JULY 2010
Embassy Cinemas
Tel. 21 227436, 21245818
20:05 – The Simpsons – Italia 1
22:45 – Blades of Glory – Italia 1
One News
20:00 L-Aħbarijiet 20:40 Dellijiet 21:30
Meander 22:00 Mixage
19:45 Net news 20:30 4-Given 21:45 Net
Tube 23:00 Net News
19:30 One News 20:00 Konfini 20:30 BarB-Q 22:00 On D Road 22:45 Tango 23:15
09:15 Favourite News 15:00 Vespri 17:00
Bingo 75 18:15 Favourite News 20:15 Favourite News 21:00 60 Minuta 23:15 Favourite News
17:40 Tg5 18:05 Insieme appassionatamente
18:50 1 contro 100 20:00 Tg5 20:30 Velone
21:10 I Cesaroni 3
00:40 – Hot Shots! – Italia 1
18:25 Studio Aperto 19:30 Tutto in famiglia
20:05 I Simpson 20:30 Mercante in fiera
21:10 Superhero 22:45 Blades of Glory
00:40 Hot Shots!
18:55 Tg4 19:35 Tempesta d’amore 20:30
Renegade 21:10 Life 23:15 24 02:05 Il cacciatore di squali
20:00 Tg1 20:30 Da Da Da 21:20 Mr & Mrs
Smith 23:30 Tg1 23:35 Mare latino 03:05
Che fine ha fatto Baby Jane?
20:30 Tg2 21:05 Ghost Whisperer
22:40 Brothers & Sisters 23:25 Segreti
dal passato 23:25 Tg2 02:20 Professione:
19:00 Tg3 20:00 Blob 20:15 Seconde
chance 21:05 Tg3 21:10 Amore criminale
23:10 Tg Regione 23:15 Tg3 Linea Notte
Estate 23:50 Doc 3
Eden Cinemas
St Julians
Tel. 21 JULY 710 400
Films released by KRS Distributors
The Killer Inside Me
The Killer Inside Me tells the story
of handsome, charming, unassuming
small town sheriff ’s deputy Lou Ford
(Casey Affleck). Lou has a bunch of
problems. Woman problems. Law enforcement problems. An ever-growing
pile of murder victims in his West Texas
jurisdiction. And the fact he’s a sadist,
a psychopath, a killer. Suspicion begins
to fall on Lou, and it’s only a matter of
time before he runs out of alibis. But in
Thompson’s savage, bleak, blacker than
The Eclipse - Twilight Saga (12)
10:30, 13:40, 16:15, 18:45, 21:15
Inception (12)
10:30, 14:30, 18:00, 20:55
Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time
10:10, 16:10, 18:35, 21:00
Shrek Forever After – The Final
Chapter (U)
10:00, 12:10, 14:20, 16:30, 18:40,
Predators (16)
14:00, 16:15, 18:30, 20:55
Killers (PG)
10:00, 12:15, 14:30, 16:45, 19:00,
noir universe nothing is ever what it
seems, and it turns out that the investigators pursuing him might have a secret
of their own.
Showing soon
Toy Story 3
Wild Target (12)
14:20 16:30 18:45 21:10 23:20
Killers (PG)
14:20 16:30 18:45 21:10 23:20
Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time
14:00, 16:20, 18:50, 21:15, 23:35
Predators (16)
14:10, 16:25, 18:40, 21:05, 23:20
Shrek Forever After – The Final
Chapter (U)
14:20, 16:25, 18:40, 20:45, 22:45
The Twilight Saga – Eclipse (12)
14:30, 18:15, 21:10, 23:45
Clash Of The Titans (12)
14:00, 16:20, 18:35, 20:55, 23:10
I Love You Philip Morris (18)
14:05, 16:20, 18:35, 20:50, 23:00
Whip It (14)
14:00 16:20 18:35 20:55 23:20
Shrek Forever After – The Final
Chapter (U)
14:10, 16:15, 18:25, 21:00, 23:05
Sex and the City 2 (16)
14:25, 18:00, 21:15
When In Rome (12)
14:15, 16:15, 18:25, 21:00, 23:00
Robin Hood (PG)
14:25 17:55 20:45 23:30
She’s Out of My League (14)
14:10, 16:30, 18:40, 21:05, 23:15
Inception (12)
14:30, 18:10, 21:15
Get Him To the Greek (18)
14:15, 16:35, 18:50, 21:05, 23:20
Empire Cinemas
Tel. 21 581 787, 21 581 909
The creators of the beloved Toy Story films
re-open the toy box and bring moviegoers
back to the delightful world of Woody, Buzz
and our favorite gang of toy characters in Toy
Story 3. Woody and Buzz had accepted that
their owner Andy would grow up someday,
but what happens when that day arrives? In
the third installment, Andy is preparing to
depart for college, leaving his loyal toys troubled about their uncertain future.
Showing soon
StreetDance (U)
13:45, 18:45
When in Rome (12)
16:10, 21:10
Shrek Forever After – The Final
Chapter (U)
13:30, 16:00, 18:30, 21:00
Inception (12)
14:10, 17:45, 20:45
The Twilight Saga – Eclipse (12)
13:40, 16:10, 18:40, 21:10
Predators (16)
14:00, 16:20, 18:40, 21:00
Wild Target (12)
14:05, 16:25, 18:50, 21:15
Killers (PG)
14:15, 16:30, 18:45, 21:05
maltatoday, WEDNESDAY, 21 JULY 2010
–08:00 – 17:00; Saturdays –
08:00 – 13:00.
The House of Chill
A Sight to Sea
Relaxed DJ Nights at Surfside,
Sliema from 20:00. Free
Inaugural exhibition for
SoGalerie, Dun Karm Street,
Iklin, featuring photographs
by David Pisani taken with
an archaic pinhole camera.
Opening hours: Monday
to Friday 10:00 – 17:00,
Saturday 10:00 – 13:00, or by
G7 Fridays Gianpula
Regular summer clubbing
nights at Gianpula Main Room
and Groove Gardens, limits
of Rabat. Bursting with a mix
of summer classics as well as
the new upfront club smashes.
Tickets from www.g7events.
com/tickets/g7fridays/. Infoline:
Daytime party at Marrakech
Club, Gianpula Complex, limits
of Rabat, from 15:00 to 23:00.
Featuring The Hacker and DJ
Misjah. Entrance is at €15. More
cirkusmalta, www.gianpula.
Exhibition by Higher National
Diploma of MCAST students
at the Magazino, Valletta
Waterfront. Featuring varied
work with the aim of renovating
the venue. Artists include: Sarah
Mamo, Jennings Falzon, George
Micallef Eynaud, Daniella
Camilleri, Sean Camilleri, Ryan
Falzon, Jamie Farrugia, Kirsten
Fenech, Sabrina Calleja Jackson
and Kamy Aquilina. Opening
hours are 09:00 – 19:00. www.
July 24
The Hacker & DJ Misjah
Joseph Calleja with Dionne
Warwick and Claudio Baglioni
The Maltese tenor will be
performing in collaboration
with fellow musicians at the
Granaries, Floriana. More
information to follow on www.
Patches – The Special Market
Fields from 20:00, courtesy of
Knockout Events. Tickets are
at €35, with VIP tickets at €50
and VVIPs at €100. Contact:
[email protected]
Winter Moods
The band will be performing at
the Granaries, Floriana. Tickets
start from €15 and are available
from all Vodafone, Agenda and
Exotique outlets or from www. There
is also a limited time offer of
two tickets for the price of one
offer that is also available to
all Vodafone subscribers from
Vodafone outlets until Tuesday,
15 June.
Portraits in Jazz
Exhibition of themed paintings
and photographs in conjunction
with The Malta Jazz Festival
at Artitude Gallery, 17, Tigne
Street, Sliema. Including work
by Jeni Caruana, Ebba Von
Fersen Balzan, Olaug Vethal,
Patrick Fenech, Joseph Smith,
Darrin Zammit Lupi and Pierre
Stafrace. Opening hours are
Monday to Friday at 10:00 to
13:00, 16:00 -19:00; Saturdays
from 10:00 to 13:00.
Brikkuni live
Brikkuni will be giving their
summer concert at The Garden
of Rest, Floriana from 21:30.
Timmy Ellis will be resident DJ
on the night. Entrance is at €7.
Bookings: [email protected]
Faithless live in concert
The popular UK electronica
act will be playing at Gianpula
Relocation – Emerging artists
from Malta
Collective exhibition at Bank
Of Valletta Centre, Sta Venera.
Featured artists are Emanuel
Bonnici, Gilbert Calleja, Patrick
Mifsud, Teresa Sciberras,
Elisa von Brockdorff, Michael
Xuereb. Curated by Raphael
Vella. Opening times: Weekdays
Patches Market will once
again take place at the Upper
Barrakka Gardens, Valletta
from 17:00 to 23:00. Featuring
handmade items by local
artisans, with music in the
evening: The Instincts will play
an acoustic set, while Karen
and Joseph will play a pianoaccordion set featuring Waltz
and traditional Maltese music,
with DJ Bob wrapping up with
indie tunes.
AUGUST 6 – 8
Kinemastik Short Film Festival
The sixth edition of the
Kinemastik Short Film Festival
will take place at the Herbert
Ganado Gardens, Floriana
from 16:30 and will feature
screenings, performances,
workshops and a mid fest party.
The festival comes to a close
this week. More information:
JULY 20, 21
Maladies and Melodies
Performance by The European
Union Baroque Orchestra at
Ambassador’s Room, Auberge
de Castille, Valletta, 21:00.
Entrance is at €15, with €10
JULY 22, 23
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
Winter Moods
Performance of William
Shakespeare’s classic play
by performers of The Globe
Theatre, London at Argotti
Gardens, Floriana, 21:00.
Entrance is at €15, with €10
A visual art project comprising
works by Sean Gabriel Ellul,
Fabrizio Ellul, Ruth Bianco,
Anton Grech and James
Micallef Grimaud will be
taking place along Strait Street,
Valletta between 10:00 – 19:00.
ANTIQUE carved wood, original
Punch and Judy puppets 21 in all
in good condition, original clothes
to sell for the price €750. Call
POMSKIZILLIOUS museum of toys
in Xaghra Gozo: Open Monday to
Saturday 10:30 - 1 and 4 - 6, July to
September. October mornings only
Monday to Saturday from 10:30 1. Groups by appointment. Now in
its 18th year this small museum is
packed with toys of bygone ages - a
trip back into the past. Call for an
appointment 21562489
SPEEDBOAT 13ft, no outboard,
plywood coated externally with fiberglass. Lovely, fast, stable boat
for who appreciates fine craftsmanship. Licensed and takes up to
30-40hp outboard. Price €750. Call
21382704, 79320055
BRONZE sliding aluminium window
with net, €70. Aluminium window
with two leaves, €50. Decorative
wrought iron window, €80. Venetian
blind, €50. Mahagony desk, €150.
Measurement 150x120 in very
good condition. Call 79412364,
DELL 1735-3887 Dual Core T3200
17” Windows Vista Home Premium,
maltatoday, WEDNESDAY, 21 JULY 2010
refurbished with 1 year warranty.
Price €500 inc Vat. Call 27333123,
HP 6720s Celeron 530 1GB Ram
80GB Hard Disk DVDRW 15.4” WiFi
Vista Home Basic, refurbished with
1 year warranty. Price €350 inc Vat.
Call 27333123, 99977722
L450-17L Celeron-M 900 2.2GHz
2GB memory 250GB hard drive 15.6”
WXGA DVD-Super, WiFi, WebCam,
Windows 7 Home Premium 64/32,
refurbished with 1 year warranty.
Price €550 inc Vat. Call 27333123,
OLD Bakelite black in excellent condition. Price €60. Also Guinness
sign 20 inch by 15. Call 99233516
Turion X2 RM-72 3GB Ram 250GB
HD DVDRW WiFi 17” Windows Vista
Home Premium, refurbished with 1
year warranty. Price €510 inc Vat.
Call 27333123, 99977722
MODERN boutique units including
clothes stands with light fittings
and cash unit. Ideal for shops. Also
stock of men’s suits. Very low prices. Call 79709085
ATTARD, one car garage in Triq ilBallut, street level with front patio.
Price €3 daily. Call 21440261,
BAHAR IC-CAGHAQ, nicely furnished and finished two bedroom
flat having two yards, sitting/living/
dining combined. Price €480 monthly. Call 99267747
BALZAN, one car garage in
Kannizati street. Price €3 daily. Call
21440261, 79440261
and short lets, one/two/three
bedroom flats. Prices start from
€230 per month. Contact owner
FGURA, street l evel seven car
garage (20x65ft) near HSBC having water, electricity, bathroom and
yard. Call 99843441
MARSASCALA, unfurnished or
semi-furnished new apartments, two
bedrooms, two bathrooms, finished
to high standards. Fully equipped
kitchens and bathrooms. Long lets.
Price €250 to 400 monthly. Call
MGARR, new maisonette with three
bedrooms, kitchen, living, dining,
two bathrooms, washroom, back
large yard, fully new furnished. Must
be seen. Price €350 monthly. Call
21570123, 99428930
MGARR, new third floor apartment,
luxury and superbly fully furnished,
three bedrooms, kitchen, dining,
lounge, two bathrooms, washroom,
terraces with panoramic views.
Price €450 monthly. Worth viewing.
Call 21570123, 99428930
QAWRA, shop near police station
and bus terminus. Good exposure
and passing trade. Call 99474403,
dining, front and back balconies,
box room. Served with lift, spacious
semi basement, optional garage.
Price €150,000. Call 99471308
RABAT, six car garage 100 sqm,
used to be a factory. Call 21455152,
ATTARD, a semi detached villa painstakingly transformed into a dream
home by its present owners. With
marble and parquet finishes, accommodation comprises a welcoming
hall, large open plan fitted kitchenbreakfast room, TV and lounge area
leading to an established garden,
study, formal lounge-dining room,
second kitchen, four double bedrooms (master with walk-in wardrobe
and an ensuite bathroom), bathroom
and spare toilet. Garage, car port
and space for swimming pool. Price
€733,500. Call 79429400
SLIEMA/GZIRA, well known located
restaurant licenced until 1am with
storage and offices. Good income
all year round. Call 99888146
SWIEQI, a modern flat with one bedroom, large kitchen, dining, living
room, bathroom/shower. Fully airconditioned, washing machine, TV,
CD. Owner away for a year or two.
Price €400 monthly. Six minutes
walk to Baystreet. Call 99233516
SWIEQI, centrally situated 30sqm
shop with front terrace. Ideal for any
kind of business. Price €15 daily.
Call owner 99267747
XLENDI, Gozo holiday flats close
to beach for short lets. Reasonable
rates. Call 21551979, 99493298
TORTOISES one year old, locally bred. Price €40 each. Call
21417258, 79211398
145sqm apartment,
facing open area with views of
Mdina. Three double bedrooms, one
ensuite, bathroom, kitchen/living/
BAHAR ic-Caghaq, airspace for
a three bedroom penthouse with
unique sea and country views. Has
a permit. Can also be exchanged for
a flat. Price €174,703. Call owner
BAHAR ic-Caghaq, finished and furnished two/three bedroom, sitting/
kitchen/dining combined. Elevated
ground floor flat, having two yards.
Situated in a new block. Call owner
BAHAR ic-Caghaq, nicely furnished
and finished three bedroom flat, all
new with two yards. Price €193,337.
Call owner 99267747
BIRKIRKARA, houses of character with one, three or six bedrooms. Works required ranging from
Choose category. Fill in the boxes provided. Write in block letters. Your advert will appear for three weeks in both MaltaToday, MaltaToday Wednesday, and
This offer does not apply to Real Estate agents. Send your form to:
MaltaToday Classifieds, Media Today, Vjal ir-Rihan, San Gwann SGN 9016.
Together with a €3 cheque payable to MediaToday Co. Ltd.
Name: ________________________________ Address: _______________________________________________________
_______________________________________ Tel: ___________________ email: _________________________________
maltatoday, WEDNESDAY, 21 JULY 2010
stone work till building only one
room. Freehold, and starting from
the price of €50,000. Call owner 99447444, 21252455 or email
[email protected]
BIRKIRKARA, maisonettes and flats
in best part of town, high quality
finish except interior doors. Two
and three bedroom starting from
€90,000. Call 79571435
GHARGHUR, An amazing house
of character in the core of this
tranquil village! Hall, sitting, dining,
kitchen, TV lounge leading onto a
100ft garden with pool, sundeck
and BBQ area, guest toilet and
a picture perfect courtyard giving
light to the whole house! Three double bedrooms – two en suite bathrooms, laundry! Price €650,000.
Call 79429400
IBRAG, an enchanting Villa with one
of the most sought after addresses on the Island! Set in tranquil
surroundings this wonderful home
boasts a lush front garden and a
sizable swimming pool with ample
deck area. Imposing entrance hall,
lounge, dining area, living room,
study, four double bedrooms, two
bathrooms (one en suite), guest
toilet, basement games-room and
two-car garage, washroom, store
room/pantry. Price €907,500. Call
IKLIN, new finished penthouse having two bedrooms, open plan, bathroom, washroom, front terrace,
back balcony, own airspace and lift.
Freehold property. Must be seen.
Call 21570123, 99428930
Detached Villa on a half Tumuli plot
(560 sq meters) set in a very quiet
part of this elite location having a
wide entrance hall leading on to a
large sitting room, separate dining
room, spacious fitted kitchen, three
double bedrooms, bathroom and en
suite shower as well as an office,
games room and family room which
leads on to a generous garden with
BBQ area and large swimming pool.
Property also boasts a two car
garage with extra storage space
making it an ideal family home. Price
maltatoday, WEDNESDAY, 21 JULY 2010
€747,000. Call 79429400
MGARR, new furnished to very high
standards maisonettes, three bedrooms, kitchen, living, dining, two
bathrooms, washroom, backyard
and front terrace. Must be seen.
Price €71,000. Call 21570123,
MGARR, new lock up garages finished to high standards. For sale
or to let at affordable rent. Must be
seen. Call 21570123, 99428930
MOSTA, spacious apartment having
three bedrooms, main with ensuite.
Own roof and air sapce. Furnished if
desired. Call 99058123, 99475192.
No agents
MOSTA, tal-Isperanza maisonette
with three bedrooms, kitchen, dining room, lounge, two bathrooms,
wash room, back yards. Very modern and furnished. Must be seen.
Price €174,700. Call 21570123,
NEW large apartment having three
double bedrooms, large open plan,
kitchen/dining/living (35ft x 22ft),
ensuite, boxroom, main bathroom
and balconies. Very good value for
money. Price €90,000. Call owner
furnished with lift. Price to sell
€122,000 to sell. Call owner
99242312, 21411598
RADISSON Blu holiday ownership,
SAS Golden Sands, deluxe, red,
rated five star, sea view and country
view, red time all year round, sleeps
six, two bathrooms, unobstructed
views from inside, affiliated interval,
international exchange in 99 countries. Available for rent or sale. Call
opportunity to acquire a plot of
land complete with full development
permits to construct an amazing
Semi Detached Villa in this most
prestigious location! Villa will comprise a bright entrance area, open
plan kitchen and living, dining, three
double bedrooms, two bathrooms
(one en suite), front, side and back
garden with swimming pool, large
underlying garage and games room!
Don’t miss out! Price €370,000. Call
room apartment, kitchen, living, dinner, bathroom, use of roof, fully
furnished with lift. Price €67,550.
Worth viewing. Call 21370123,
opportunity! Fully Detached Villa on
a tumolo plot (1124 sq meters) with
a lovely mature garden with ample
space for large pool and sun deck.
Elegant entrance hall with marble
flooring, large sitting room, formal dining room, separate large TV
lounge, separate kitchen/breakfast
room with interconnecting pantry
and garage. All rooms lead directly to the surrounding garden and
property has an abundance of light
throughout. Five double bedrooms
(four upstairs and a guest bedroom/
office at ground floor level), two
bathrooms, shower, large terraces,
box room, four car drive/carport
and more! Price €1,150,000. Call
SWIEQI/IBRAGG, excellent location, four bedroom corner terraced
house with three bathrooms, kitchen, dining room, lounge, wash room,
roof, garden and six car garage.
Must be seen. Price €415,000. Call
21570123, 99428930
SITE to develop, even houses, airspace, inheritance with tenants
etc. Joint ventures/part exchange
considered too. Call developer on
99447444, 21252455
SLIEMA, a magnificent Penthouse
in Dingli Street served with lift and
intercom and enjoying abundant natural light and lots of space! Open
plan dining, sitting and kitchen with
large doors leading on to a wonderful terrace enjoying a beautiful panorama of town and partial sea views!
This property has three bedrooms,
bathroom, en suite shower and a
utility room. Price €349,500. Call
SLIEMA, four bedroom/four bathroom house on ground and first
floors. Four reception rooms, two
kitchens, internal yard and small
back garden. Air space- penthouse
possible. Ideal for extended families. Minor alterations required.
Price €480,000. Call 99498767
SLIEMA, St Gregory’s Church area,
12 room townhouse on ground and
first floors, light and airy, imposing entrance and staircase, four/
five bedrooms, four bathrooms, spacious lounge and dining room with
traditional Maltese balcony and fireplace, kitchen, study/dayroom, private roof with possibility of a penthouse or additional floors. Minor
alterations required. Price €480,000
or very near offer. Call 99498767
SLIEMA, Tower Road, seafront fully
furnished three double bed in single
block (walking distance to shops).
Price €550,000. Call 77446655
Mediatoday is looking to immediately employ a journalist on
a part-time/full-time basis. Preference will be given to those
individuals with prior experience in reporting and journalism.
Applicants must be fluent in both Maltese and English.
The applicant must be willing to work in a team and is
conversant with uploading news on internet. Working
weekends and knowledge of audio-visual techniques would
be required.
Managing Editor, MediaToday, Vjal ir-rihan, San Gwann
or Email to [email protected]
Send to:
The Managing Editor
MediaToday, Vjal ir-Rihan, San Gwann
A property site backed up by personal service; Call 79429400
ORDER your decorative mugs now.
Your choice of wording, photos, pictures for every occasion. Surprise
your beloved ones. An ideal gift at a
very good price. 79998232
A personal driver is required on a
part time basis. Applicants must be
over 25 with a clean police conduct.
Call 99843441
HOUSEKEEPER needed three to
four times weekly in the evenings.
Kindly call 79603203
MAID is required to work in a family
residence. Must be over 21 years of
age. Call 79999928
PHARMACIST is required to work
for three mornings per week. Call
SALES person, mature and experienced for a toy shop and marine
accessories. Also outboard mechanic for fitting and servicing of engines.
Call 79732780
LOOKING for a job as a carer with
an elderly lady. Doing the necessary
work and sleeping at her place. Call
79988024, 21822093
FORM 1 next year? Start French
and Italian now while improving your
English and Maltese too. Lessons in
Paola starting soon. Also forms 2, 3,
4 and 5. Matsec September resits in
English and Maltese. Matsec 2011
Italian, French, Maltese and English.
Call 21697187, 99804695
lessons for Matsec 2010-2011 on
one to one attention. Also for Mcast
foundation courses. Call 99242312,
MALTESE form 1 to 5. Resits
Intermediate/Advanced Level 2011.
Notes provided. University graduate. Central area. Call 21410218,
PRIVATE lessons in Maths, English
and Physics for Forms 3, 4 and 5.
Call 21417258, 79211398
RESIT O’Level classes starting
soon. Contact St. Mark’s Institute
on 21487115, 79443940 or email
[email protected]
RESITS September 2010, Maths
and English at O’Level at Naxxar.
Call 21417258, 79211398
SECRETARIAL course starting very
soon. Contact St. Mark’s Institute
on 21487115, 79443940 or email
[email protected] A 5% discount
on course fee if applying by 13
FIAT Brava, four original wheels
14x5.5, as new and very little used.
Price €150 for four, Four matching
hubcaps €15 each but €50 for four.
Call 21382704, 79320055
FORD Focus 1.8 TDCi Zetec. Light
Blue, 2006. Mint condition. Price
€12,000. Call 99477956
FORD Ka , black and one owner, full extras. Very good condition, garaged. Price €3,300. Call
MITSUBISHI Colt Mirage. Black colour, 2005. Mint condition. Price
9,200. Call 99477956
PEUGEOT 407, 16HDi SE. Silver
colour, 2005. Mint condition. Call
TOYOTA Auris T3 D4D. Grey colour, 2007. Mint condition. Price
€14,500. Call 99477956
TOYOTA Yaris T3, 5/3 door, 10/13
cc. Choice of four: black, red and
white. Price €9,200. Mint condition.
Call 99477956
VW Golf Tdi. Grey colour, 2006.
Low licence and in mint condition.
Price €12,800. Call 99477956
GRAPHICAL communication private
SPINOLA Bay, restaurant first
class Italian fully furnished. Running
concern with tenets paying rent
for fours contract. Price freehold
€525,000. Excellent investment.
Call 77446655
ST JULIAN’S Bay seafront restaurant, wine bar built with aquarium
for seating customers unique first
class fully furnished Italian style.
Available as investment yielding rent
for four year contract. Freehold.
Price €525,000. Call 77446655
ST Paul’s Bay, top floor two bed-
Automatic bed, ideal for the elderly has been purchased only
5 months ago, it is fully adjustable by push button and includes
side rails, waterproof mattress and side food table. €900.00.
Mob. 99031619/21228514.
Call Steve on 99059174 or email [email protected]
maltatoday, WEDNESDAY, 21 JULY 2010
Fedrigo denies Armstrong stage win
LANCE Armstrong failed in a
brave bid to win a stage in his
final Tour de France as Pierrick Fedrigo won stage 16 in
Pau yesterday.
The seven-time champion
was part of a nine-man break
that contested the sprint finish at the end of the Queen
stage in the Pyrenees that featured four epic climbs on the
189.5km route from Bagneres
de Luchon.
But the American who could
not match the turn of pace of
the Bbox Bouygues rider who
secured France’s sixth stage
win in this year’s race.
It was a case of déjà vu for
Fedrigo as he won the Pyrenees stage to Tarbes last year
on a route, like today, that also crossed the famous ascents
of the Col d’Aspin and the Col
de Tourmalet.
The 31-year-old burst away
on the in the final metres to
beat compatriot Sandy Casar
(FDJ) and Spain’s Ruben Plaza (Caisse d’Epargne) to the
line after a brave solo bid for
Carlos Barredo was thwarted.
The Spaniard attacked his fellow escapees at the foot of the
descent of the Col d’Aubisque
with 40km remaining but was
caught as he passed under the
Flamme Rouge.
There were no changes in the
top 10 on the overall standings with Alberto Contador,
who expressed his regret after
snatching the yellow jersey after benefiting from rival Andy
Schleck’s mechanical problem
in the 15th stage, retaining
his eight second lead over the
Luxembourg rider going into
the rest day.
Stage winner Pierrick Fedrigo of France, Ruben Plaza Molina of Spain, Christopher Horner of the US, Carlos Barredo of
Spain and Sandy Casar of France, left to right, cross the finish line of the 16th stage of the Tour de France cycling race
over 199.5 kilometers
U*BET HorseRacing Malta - Sicily
Encounter Race 2010
THE Malta Racing Club is
pleased to announce that the
2010 Malta – Sicily Encounter
Race will be held in Malta for the
first time on the 23rd July at the
racing track in Marsa.
The U*BET HorseRacing Malta–Sicily Encounter Race is a first
for Malta as 10 Italian horses will
be visiting our island to race in
this unique and special encounter race.
Dr Matthew Brincat, Malta
Racing Club Chairman commented that “after last year’s
successful event which was held
at the “Ippodromo del Mediterraneo” in Syracuse where we had
8 Maltese owned horses crossing
over to Sicily and racing against
Italian bred horses, this year
the Club has organised a double
heat, one in Malta on the 23rd
July, and the second leg in Sicily
on the 1st August.”
He continued, “although encounter races between Maltese
drivers or jockeys against foreign
representatives have been held
at the Club for a long time, it is
the very first time that now even
the horses are coming over to
race, not just the driver or jockey,
which as one would expect is
definitely not an easy task to organise such an event.”
Since taking over the management of the track, Dr. Brincat
and his fellow club directors
have strived to organise unique
events, which attract more people to the sport of horse racing.
Mr Cassar, Maltco Lotteries
General Director, said “Maltco
Lotteries Ltd. has in the last
2 years built a very good relationship with the Malta Racing Club and is once again very
pleased that through one of its
games – U*BET HorseRacing is
being part of this first event for
Maltese Horse Racing.” U*BET
HorseRacing has now been in
operation for over 2 years with
a link to Swedish horse races
shown live in most of Maltco
Lotteries outlets both in the afternoon and evenings as well
as on weekdays with one of the
most renowned race, the V75,
held every Saturday.
The U*BET HorseRacing Malta – Sicily Encounter Race, will
consist of twenty participants, 10
horses representing Malta and 8
Italian bred horses, that will run
two races on the same day over
a distance of 1640m. The pro-
gramme will hold a heat between
the Maltese participants and another heat between the Italian
The first 5 from each heat will
participate in the Main Final,
whilst the other horses will run
in a Consolation Final.
At the end of the Press Conference, both Dr Brincat and Mr
Cassar thanked all those involved
especially the organisers and the
horse owners for their participation in such a historic event for
Maltese horse racing.
maltatoday, WEDNESDAY, 21 JULY 2010
Germany coach Joachim
Loew signs contract
extension until 2012
THE German head coach has
signed a new deal with the
Joachim Loew’s contract with
the German football association (DFB) expired after this
summer’s World Cup and the
tactician’s future has been surrounded by question marks
since the end of the tournament.
However, the former Fenerbahce coach is now set to sign
a contract extension with the
DFB after lengthy negotiations
about a new deal. According
to a report in Bild, Loew has
agreed terms with the DFB
about a new two-year contract.
The 50-year-old will be in
charge of der Mannschaft during both the Euro 2012 qualifying campaign and the tournament in Poland/Ukraine itself
as a result of the contract extension.
Assistant coach Hansi Flick,
team manager Oliver Bierhoff
and goalkeeper coach Andreas
Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton
Hamilton: We never
fight like Red Bull
Joachim Loew
Koepke have all signed new
deals until 2012, too.
“I’m very happy that we’ve
managed to hold on to Joachim
Loew and his technical staff.
German football has made
some great progress since
2004 and the contract renewal
of Loew was one of our main
priorities,” was DFB president
Theo Zwanziger quoted as saying at a press conference.
FORMULA One championship leader Lewis Hamilton is
certain the in-fighting affecting rivals Red Bull could never
happen at McLaren despite
team mate Jenson Button lying just behind him in second
Red Bull’s Mark Webber
won the British Grand Prix at
Silverstone on July 11 but the
Australian was incensed after
the team took a new wing off
his car and handed it to teammate Sebastian Vettel for the
qualifying session.
Hamilton coasted to a second
place finish to stretch his overall lead to 12 points while defending champion and fellow
Briton Button came in fourth
before letting his team mate
hop in his road car.
“He gave me a lift home at Silverstone last week and I would
do the same for him,” Hamilton said, while acknowledging
the pair are not best friends
and rarely relax together.
“No, there’s respect,” he added when asked if Red Bull’s
woes could ever be witnessed
in the current McLaren set up.
Hamilton, the 2008 world
champion, was awarded the
prestigious Lorenzo Bandini
trophy at the weekend in the
small northern Italian town of
The annual prize in honour
of Brisighella resident Bandini
who died in a crash at the Monaco Grand Prix in 1967 could
be the first of many for Hamilton this year but thoughts of
another F1 title are yet to enter
his head.
“It’s strange. I’ve had four
solid races, two wins and two
second places, and yet I’m
only 12 points ahead,” he said
on a scorching hot day in the
Brisighella mayor’s office.
“We’ll have to see how it goes
but if I can increase that gap a
bit I’ll certainly be happier.”
Hamilton reckoned Red Bull
could again be the quickest at
this weekend’s German Grand
Prix at Hockenheim despite
their “driver problems” as
McLaren race to upgrade their
However, he hailed his team
for a togetherness which is
helping them pick up crucial
points when others stray.
He also saluted local hero Valentino Rossi, who stunned motorsport by finishing fourth in
Sunday’s German MotoGP just
six weeks after breaking his leg
and being told he would be out
for at least three months.
“He is crazy,” Hamilton
laughed, adding he one day
would like to see the Rossi
try F1.
Schumacher will bounce back
MERCEDES motorsport director Norbert Haug believes
the German Formula One
team and driver Michael
Schumacher can bounce back
from a disappointing season
to date, starting with this
weekend’s German Grand
Prix at Hockenheim.
Nico Rosberg lies sixth in
the drivers’ standings after
10 of 19 races while teammate Schumacher languishes
in ninth, a massive 109 points
adrift of championship leader Lewis Hamilton.
Despite the seven-time
world champion’s poor showing so far in 2010, Haug says
Mercedes have no intention
of looking for a replacement
for Schumacher or that the
41-year-old could consider
calling it a day at the end of
the season.
“Definitely not,” he said. “As
soon as we have a winning
car then he will enjoy victories just like Nico Rosberg.”
Haug admitted that Schu-
macher had failed to live up
to expectations after returning to the sport but refused
to place the blame on the
“Michael finished in fourth
place twice in the last six
grand prix. That’s not much
for Schumacher or according
to Mercedes standards but a
lot when you consider what
was possible in these races,”
said Haug.
Rosberg, meanwhile, has
amassed 90 points so far this
season to lie 55 behind Hamilton, something that hasn’t
surprised Haug.
“Nico is one of the best
around. Who knows, he
could even be the best of
them all,” said Haug, adding that he was convinced
the team would turn things
“We will make it to the very
top,” he promised. “We know
what it takes to win races.
We’ve done it before and
we’ll do it again.”
maltatoday, WEDNESDAY, 21 JULY 2010
Franck Ribery charged
with soliciting an
under-age prostitute
RIBERY could face up to three
years in prison. Karim Benzema
is to go before a judge later.
France and Bayern Munich
winger Franck Ribery has been
charged with soliciting an underage prostitute and could face up to
three years in jail, a judicial official
told the news agency AFP.
Both Ribery and Real Madrid
striker Karim Benzema had been
detained for questioning by police
about a prostitution ring in Paris.
The players came under investigation after they were alleged to
have paid for sex with Zahia Dehar when she was a minor.
Prostitution is legal in France,
but prostitutes must be over 18
years old, and clients are liable
if they are not of legal age. The
woman in question denied that
the players were aware of her age
but this hasn’t stopped an investigating magistrate from releasing
Ribery after he was charged with
the offence.
Karim Benzema is to go before a
judge later. Both face three years
in prison, but only if the prosecu-
Manchester City officials
travel to Italy to complete
£35m deal for Balotelli
Franck Ribery could go to prison
tion can prove they knew prostitute was a minor.
Zahia Dehar is alleged to have
met clients at the club while she
was under age, Dehar, has already
told investigators that she had
paid sex with the two players.
Dehar said she had been paid
for sex since the age of 16 when
she began partying in Paris. She
claimed she met Benzema at a
nightclub and he bought her services, and alleged that Lyon and
France forward Sidney Govou
had, too.
She told Paris Match magazine
that Ribery flew her to a hotel in
Germany for the night as a birthday present to himself.
Former Inter coach Roberto Mancini gives instructions to Mario Balotelli
Zahia Dehar relaxing in Dubai
MANCHESTER City officials
reportedly arrived in Italy yesterday to finalise a £35 million
move for Inter forward Mario
The highly rated youngster
enjoyed a hot and cold relationship with former boss Jose
Mourinho, and was left out of
the squad on more than one occasion last season.
The Portuguese boss has since
left the Milanese club to take
charge at Real Madrid, while
the 19-year-old has been tipped
to reunite with his former boss
Roberto Mancini at Eastlands.
The Daily Mail reports that
City officials are set to arrive
in the peninsula to seal a deal
worth £35m for the transfer of
the young hotshot.
Balotelli had previously described his former boss Mancini as a “friend” and a “great
coach”, who was the one who
handed him his debut in the
Serie A.
9. Effect a radical change (13)
10. Mixture of earth and water
11. Pertaining to Spain (7)
12. Slant (4)
13. Leg joint (4)
15. Big (5)
17. Ashore (7)
19. Derby venue (5)
21. Knock vigorously (3)
23. Feed on grass (5)
24. Formal speech (7)
25. Jewish scholar (5)
27. Not one (4)
28. Stupefy (4)
30. Rattling sound (7)
32. Grievous distress (3)
33. Not fully conscious (4-9)
Sudoku rules are
extremely easy: Fill all empty
squares so that the numbers 1
to 9 appear once in each row,
column and 9x9 box.
Answers to the MaltaToday crossword will be published next Wednesday
Last week’s solution
Today’s Weather
WEATHER: Partly to rather cloudy
becoming mainly fine
Variable force 2 to
3 becoming mainly
White to play and mate in two moves
30ºC / 23ºC
1. Astronaut (9)
2. Benefit (5)
3. In addition to (4)
4. Newcomer (8)
5. Incentive (6)
6. Desire (4)
7. Recall past experiences (9)
8. Pass legal judgment (5)
14. One that moves (5)
16. Is inclined (5)
18. Resistant to staining (9)
20. Hypnotism (9)
22. Picture executed in paints
26. Tree limb (6)
27. Recently (5)
29. Permit (5)
30. Prolonged unconsciousness (4)
31. Large stone (4)
maltatoday, WEDNESDAY, 21 JULY 2010
Corporate Village
private land
Artist’s impression of the Corporate Village, as it appears on the official website
SOME 3,000 square metres of
private land belonging to third
parties have been included in
plans for the development of a
‘corporate village’ proposed by
Malta Enterprise.
The land, which includes privately owned factories and
warehouses, occupies 8% of the
project’s total footprint of 36,400
square metres.
Owners who have contacted
this newspaper have expressed
their disappointment at the fact
that they have only learned that
their land was included in the
project from reports on the media, and after reading a call for
expression of interest issued by
Malta Enterprise.
The document states that most
of the site is held under title by
Malta Industrial Parks, but
a small portion at the South
end of the site (approximately
3,000m2) belongs to third parties.
The expression of interest
states that the transfer of immovable property for the implementation of this project
will be made in accordance with
the provisions of the Disposal of
Government Land Act.
Corporate Village Malta intends
to achieve Malta Government’s
vision of excellence by establishing a banking, financial services
and trade hub in Mriehel, the
nascent banking, finance and
commercial district in Malta.
Located over a footprint of
36,400m2, Corporate Village
Malta will provide office, leisure,
retail, sports, conferencing and
parking facilities in 130,000m2
of space.
It will serve as Government’s
single point of contact for business with the re-location of
Malta government’s main regulatory and business support
agencies and departments to
the site.
With Malta envisaged to take
over the EU Presidency in 2017,
Corporate Village Malta will be
the main hub of activity for the
Presidency Summits and events
during its six month tenure.
Following the Expression of
Interest, which closes on September 3, 2010, Malta Enterprise will issue a Request for
Proposals to the short-listed
parties following the conduct of
a due diligence process.
The preferred bidder will be
granted an emphyteusis for 50
years, with the project commencing in 2012 and estimated
to be finalised by 2015.
[email protected]

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