Why Are South Africans Moving to Malta?

Malta, one of the safest countries in the world is attracting a number of South African nationals who are relocating due to various reasons. With the rise of Covid cases, the increment of travel restrictions for South African passport holders, and the lack of safety in general, a number of South African nationals are applying for Maltese residency or citizenship as a Plan B to be able to relocate if the situation continues to deteriorate.

In this publication, we explain why Malta is the best option for South Africans wishing to, not only be granted the right to live in Europe, but also access all European financial markets while offering their children a future filled with opportunities and choices.

1. Malta is Safe and Secure

An increase in crime rates is most often directly attributable to lack of employment opportunities in a country. Malta boasts of one of the lowest unemployment rates in Europe, with an unemployment rate of only 3.6% in 2021, and finding employment in Malta is quite relatively easy.

For the fourth consecutive year, in 2021 crime rates in Malta decreased by 16% which shows that Malta is a safe country to relocate to. Malta’s crime rate, at 31 instances of crime per 1,000 inhabitants largely culminates above the EU’s average 59 instances per 1,000 inhabitants. Indeed, crime levels in Malta are exceptionally low in comparison with most EU countries making it the second safest country in the world and first in the EU according to a study carried out by the AfrAsia Bank Global Wealth Migration Review. These indexes and statistics reflect a number of factors such as freedom of the press, equality in terms of gender, multi-culturalism, respect to various cultures and religions and minimal exposure to natural disasters. As a full member of the European Union, Malta is recognized as a safe place where immigrants feel part of a welcoming community.

2. Malta is an English Speaking Country

Malta, being part of the Commonwealth, is the only country in the Schengen area with English as its official language. Being an official language of Malta, English is widely spoken and is considered to be the everyday life language of most Maltese residence, making the shift to Malta, for those wishing to relocate, very smooth and free of language obstacles.
For children and university students particularly, it allows them to continue their education path with no interruption caused by any language barrier. In addition, Malta hosts a number of English schools attracting students from all over the world.

3. Visa Free Travel Destinations for Maltese Citizens

These two reasons, combined with the 186 visa-free destinations you can access as a Maltese passport holder (including the US, Canada and the UK) places Malta as a top-notch choice for South Africans, wishing to offer their families a brighter future filled with opportunities, while protecting their personal and commercial interests.

How can South African Nationals Obtain Maltese Residency or Citizenship?

It doesn’t come as a surprise that the South African community in Malta is growing. We will now explain how a South African national can apply for citizenship or residency in Malta.

Malta Permanent Residence Programme (MPRP)

The Malta Permanent Residence Programme is the most popular residence programmes with South African nationals based on the fact that this gives permanent residence which is valid for life. The MPRP was launched in 2021 and it grants permanent residence if an applicant satisfies the following requirements:

  1. A contribution of either €68,000 or €98,000 which is to be paid upon approval depending on whether the applicant rents or purchases property in Malta.
  2. An investment in property (rental or purchase), and
  3. A donation of €2,000 to a Maltese charity organisation or NGO.

Malta Global Residence Programme (GRP) for South Africans

The Malta Global Residence Programme on the other hand grants a special tax status by virtue of which an applicant can apply for a Maltese residence card. Since 2013, the GRP has been seeking expatriates seeking an alternative tax residence jurisdiction in the European Union.
The applicant must also satisfy 3 requirements including:

  • A one-time non-refundable fee of €6,000
  • An investment in property (rental or purchase), and
  • A minimum annual tax payment of €15,000

Malta Citizenship by Investment for South African Nationals

The Granting of Maltese Citizenship for Exceptional Services by Direct Investment is regulated by Legal Notice 437 of 2020. Under these regulations, investors can apply for Maltese citizenship after three years or by an exceptional investment after 1 year of residency.
Under these regulations, an applicant may apply for Maltese citizenship through investment if he satisfies the following requirements:

  • An exceptional contribution of €600,000 when the application is submitted after 36 months of residence or €750,000 when the application is submitted after 12 months of residence, and
  • An investment in property (rental or purchase), and
  • A donation of €10,000 to a Maltese charity organisation or NGO.

How Can We Assist?

ACC Immigration is licenced by Agenzija Komunita Malta to submit applications on behalf of interested applicants and holds licence number AKM-ACCA-21.