During his weekly video blog, the Minister for Finance Prof. Edward Scicluna discusses the recently-published European Commission Winter Forecast 2015.
He notes that while economic forecasts and appraisals are carried out regularly, the Commission Forecast has added importance because it is against the Commission’s forecasts and analysis that Malta’s performance with regard to the EU’s debt and deficit rules will be judged.
Prof. Scicluna underlines that while Malta’s performance on debt and deficit reduction has been encouraging, Malta remains under the Excessive Deficit Procedure (EDP), a situation inherited from the previous administration.
The Minister remarks that the Government is looking forward to the coming March, when the Commission is expected to deliver is appraisal on whether Malta can exit the EDP.
He notes that the Commission’s own Winter Forecast is encouraging in this regard, as it gives clear indications of a strong likelihood that Malta will be placed in the preventative arm of the procedure, a category for countries not at risk of EDP but which still may need to undertake efforts to contain the deficit.
Prof. Scicluna underlines that this exercise is not simply being undertaken for the sake of the Commission, but it is something that the Government recognizes the importance of, and remains committed to.
He emphasizes that while the Government is determined to maximize Malta’s economic potential and see that this wealth is spread across all of society, it will nevertheless adhere to its deficit and debt reduction targets, which is one of the leading goals of this Government as well as an electoral pledge.
– 5th February, 2015