Current Affairs
PM announces extension for signing of promises of sale in order to benefit from reduction on stamp duty

Prime Minister and Labour Party Leader Robert Abela has announced he will be extending until the end of July the period for the signing of a promise of sale on property in order to benefit from a reduction on stamp duty. During a political activity in Rabat, the Prime Minister also announced that discussions will start tomorrow on amendments to the divorce law. Dr Abela also declared that an election will be held whenever he decides, adding that even he wants the country to emerge from the pandemic, but this in order that the people can start living a normal life once again.

The Prime Minister announced a four-month extension to the measure on reduction in stamp duty on property. Dr Abela said the Government had heard that youths wishing to purchase property said they will not manage to sign a promise of sale until the end of March, and for this reason explained that this measure will now remain in force until the end of July.

The Prime Minister also announced that on Monday Parliament will start discussing amendments to the divorce law, which will reduce the four-year waiting period for couples who are legally separated, before they can apply for divorce, whether consensual or if one party only would like to apply for divorce.

The Labour leader said one does not gain the people’s confidence overnight, and he had managed this after the people witnessed consistent action on a daily basis and a clear vision for the country. Dr Abela added that the Labour Government had inherited 25 years of mistakes by the Nationalist Government, and stressed that he is not afraid to carry out major reforms; on the contrary, he tackles these with determination and a clear conviction. As an example, the speaker referred to the reform in the pre-1995 rent laws which was announced yesterday, explaining that some 10,000 families will benefit from this.

The Prime Minister countered criticism on unbridled development and environmental damage, stating that today’s construction is being carried out according to local plans made by a Nationalist Government in 2006. Dr Abela added that the architect for the 2006 local plans is today the Opposition Leader’s right-hand man, further stating that this means the Opposition is in a position to offer what we had in the country before 2013.

Dr Abela referred to the latest developments in connection with the murder of Daphne Caruana Galizia and said the Opposition had come out with an attack against the institutions. The speaker promised that he would continue to defend the institutions so that they can continue to carry out their duties.

The Prime Minister also referred to the resignation of Rosianne Cutajar from the post of Parliamentary Secretary, stating that in this manner she had placed the country’s interests before her personal interests. Dr Abela added that on the other hand, the Opposition acts as convenient, and decides not to decide. The Prime Minister asked what the Nationalist Party leader will do about Adrian Delia in light of allegations in his regard, and asked whether, on the same lines as the Opposition leader had called for action regarding Rosianne Cutajar, he would be using the same yardstick on Adrian Delia and on other Party exponents including Jason Azzopardi.

The Prime Minister reiterated his appeal for everyone to join Team Malta, which he said never follows partisan political interests but places the national interest above all else. Dr Abela said the election will be held whenever he decides, adding that he wants the country to emerge from the pandemic so that the people can return to normality.