PM tells diplomatic corp that migrants disembarkation in Malta is not the solution
Prime Minister Joseph Muscat said that the disembarkation in Malta of 49 migrants on Wednesday was not the final solution for the migration issue. During the exchange of new year’s greetings with the diplomatic corp at Castille, Dr Muscat stated that migration will remain an issue for Europe for the coming weeks, months and years, and warned that if it is ignored it will damage Europe’s future as a union.
Prime Minister Muscat said that the latest migrants’ case shows the serious weakness in the management of this phenomenon and the lack of awareness of various European countries on what is happening in southern Europe.
Dr Muscat defended Malta’s position in signing the United Nations Global Compact on Migration because, he said, Malta believes that global dimension is needed which goes beyond EU’s borders. “There can be a sensible migration management policy which is humane but which gives peace of mind to the legitimate security concerns of people in the host country. This is what Malta stands for.”
The Prime Minister added that the 5+5 summit, which will meet in Malta this month with the theme “Working Together: Sustainable Future for Western Mediterranean”, will serve to see the progress made with regards to common issues.
Dr Muscat said that Malta is supporting Africa, both with solidarity and also economically, adding that Malta’s diplomatic efforts in the trade field are showing results in African and Asian countries, including in India, Japan and China.
On Brexit, he said that the United Kingdom and the EU will continue to face common challenges and threats, and therefore there is the need for good and strong relations between the two. He said that the rights of Maltese citizens in the UK will be protected and that the British community in Malta will continue to feel well.
The Prime Minister referred to Malta’s prosperity with the biggest economic growth in its history, and at the same time the country is implementing many measures of social awareness. He also spoke on the new challenges of artificial intelligence. “The challenges posed by artificial intelligence should not be shouldered alone.”
The dean of the diplomatic corp, Apostolic Nuncio Alessandro D’Errico, praised the Maltese Government efforts on various levels, in particular to ensure that the economic growth does not benefit the privileged few but will be for all citizens. He also referred to the complex issues of migration that Malta frequently faces due to its geographical position, while understanding the Prime Minister’s position that this has to be globally addressed.
At Castille, the Prime Minister also met with the Maltese Honorary Consuls to whom he expressed his satisfaction, among others, for The Economist’s Democracy Index for 2018, which classified Malta in 18th place among 165 countries.