Hedgeweek Special Report: Malta Hedge Fund Services 2014
Malta's fund services business continues to grow rapidly, driven by increased interest from asset managers setting up AIFMs and prudent regulation such as the PIF regime that is also proving popular with non-EU managers.
With competitive costs of setting up funds and fund management companies, Malta is not resting on its laurels and is already working on opening up new avenues of business, such as the loan funds market.
This Hedgeweek Special was prepared with the support and expert contributions from the main players in the Maltese Financial Jurisdiction, namely the Maltese Financial Services Authority, Fund Administrators, Legal Offices which specialise in setting up funds and Sparkasse Bank Malta plc.
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Fitch affirms Malta at ‘A’, Outlook Stable
In its report, Fitch noted that GDP growth in Malta was outperforming the eurozone average.
“In 2013 the economy grew by 2.9 per cent, better than 2012 (1.1 per cent) and higher than the eurozone average (negative 0.4 per cent), but still below the ‘A’ median of 3.4 per cent over five years. In the first half of the year, real GDP grew by 3.5 per cent, mainly driven by domestic demand, underpinned by the reduction in electricity tariffs and favourable labour market conditions.”
Fitch said it expected above potential growth averaging 2.5 per cent in 2015-16, continuing above the eurozone average.
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Malta's Ranking as a Financial Jurisdiction - World Economic Forum
Malta’s ranking as one of the world’s top financial jurisdictions has been confirmed by the World Economic Forum in its annual Global Competitiveness Report for 2014-2015. The increasing soundness of its banking institutions has been reflected in a significant improvement in relevant score which now puts the country amongst the best 10 rankings (14th in 2013-2014). Malta also maintained the 13th ranking position in terms the strength of auditing standards and reporting standards.
This year’s Report provides an overview of the competitiveness performance of 144 economies, and thus continues to be a highly comprehensive assessment of economic performance. It contains a detailed profile for each of the economies included in the study, as well as an extensive section of data tables with global rankings covering over 100 indicators. For the sixth consecutive year Switzerland leads the table, ahead of Singapore as the second-most competitive economy in the world.
Overall, Malta has again been ranked amongst the top 50 nations in terms of competitiveness. It has also maintained its status of an innovation-driven economy. Moreover, Malta maintained its high scores in important sectors which strengthen its proposition as a investment location, ranking amongst the top 20 nations with regards to the quality of education and health services offered.
In its introduction, the World Economic Forum notes that this Report is being launched at a time when the world seems to be finally emerging from the worst financial and economic crisis of the past 80 years and returning to a pre-crisis situation: large interest rate spreads for public debt in hard-hit countries are falling; banking systems seem more robust, even if financial reform has not yet been completed; and access to credit, while still limited, is slowly recovering. Overall, it adds, growth prospects in advanced economies are better than they have been in recent years, albeit very unevenly distributed.
The full Report is available here.