PL has no plan to create jobs - Chris Said
The PL has no plans to create jobs in their Electoral Manifesto, Minister for Justice, Dialogue and the Family Chris Said announced during a press conference at the PN HQ.
The Minister was speaking about the PN’s commitment to creating jobs, breaking record upon record. The PN saved 5,000 jobs when the Government saved a number of factories from closure, he said. Through this legislature a number of factories created new jobs, which has resulted in the record amount of full-time employees in Malta has today.
There are 7000 people registering for work according to today’s National Statistic Office report, it was announced. The Minister argued that if it wasn’t for the 20,000 jobs it created, Malta would be in worse shape.
Over the past five year the minimum wage increased, he said. The PL had created a record of unemployment when they were in Government, Chris Said alleged. He spoke about the thousands of workers the PL had employed in the past right before an election. The economic repercussions of this decision are still being felt today, he accused.
The PN invested in education and particularly in Stipends, the Minister said. He mentioned the PL’s energy plan, which would be a waste of money.
The EU will have the second highest rate of economic growth in the EU, Chris Said reiterated, emphasising that the PN will continue to work towards getting jobs. In the PN Electoral Programme are a number of solid and detailed proposals which will help expand the jobs market. He mentioned a €1 million investment to help increase the exportation of goods for factories and SME’s. He spoke about grants and lowering taxes for these businesses.
The Minister spoke about incentives for tourism, particularly mentioning Gozo which will see the increase of health and religious tourism. He described the large amount of EU funds which were and will be directed towards Gozo.
The Electoral Programme mentions a work trial scheme, which will see unemployed persons have work trials which will further increase employment. He also mentioned Jobs Plus, which is the active labour market policy the UHM had suggested, stating the PN’s commitment to uphold this ideal. He mentioned the programme called Bridging the Gap, which helps those in troubled situations find work. The Community Work Scheme gave people who had been unemployed for over five years gain work experience working with Local Councils and voluntary organisations.
Dr Said described schemes to urge pensioners to keep working rather than retiring, including schemes which will entice employers to keep these people working in their companies. Those who work full time and receive minimum wage whilst holding a part-time job, will have the opportunity to pay national insurance on both jobs in order for them to receive a better pension.
He mentioned €40 million from the EU funds have been earmarked to help SME’s. the Minister argued. He mentioned the aviation park which had created a large number of jobs.
The Electoral Programme promises that people with severe disability will receive a pension equal to that of the minimum wage. He mentioned disabled people who find jobs, reiterating that they would not lose their pension.
In Gozo the employment rate under the PN rose by 6%, the Minister said, adding that the PN are in no way happy with such a low number.
When asked about Smart City, the Minister said that the private sector invested €80 million in the project and works are ongoing. He added that no public funds were used in the project.
There are clear rules when releasing a tender, The Minister said replying to questions, It is not done on a whim.
When asked how the PN would create 25,000 jobs, Dr Said explained that it will be done through new initiatives and investment. He explained that the PN will continue what they have done to create 20,000 jobs and with new investment this will raise to 25,000 jobs.