Author Archives: admin.01


The trade deficit at current prices was 14848.1 million dinars (MD) during the first nine months of 2019 compared to 14183.2 MDs in the same period of the past year, according to the National Institute of Statistics (INS). The coverage rate increased by 1.5 percentage points from the first nine months of 2018 to 69% against 67.5%. Excluding energy, the trade balance deficit is 9201.2 MD. The deficit in the energy balance stands at 5646.9 MD (38% of the total deficit) against 4683.7 MD in the same period of 2018.
Tunisia has seen its energy product imports increase by 24.3% due to the increase in purchases of natural gas (2934.3 MD against 1768.6 MD). According to the note on foreign trade of NIS at current prices (September 2019), general exports increased by 12% compared to + 19.8% in the same period of 2018. They reached 33008.4 MD level against 29481.7 MD during the first nine months of last year. Similarly, imports increased by 9.6% compared to + 21% during the same period of 2018. Imports therefore reached 47856.5 MD against 43664.8 MD.


Source: medNews


Commissioner-designate Helena Dalli, the Maltese candidate for the equality portfolio on EU Gender Strategy and the fight against discrimination is expected to be approved after she was quizzed in a 3 hour hearing before members of the European Parliament. At the end of the hearing, she has received the two-thirds of the votes needed to be approved as commissioner. During her introductory speech, Helena Dalli said that discrimination is “harming both individuals and society as a whole,” and that she would fight for a Europe “free of discrimination”.

Once approved, she committed to establish, within three months, a Task Force on Equality to build an inter-sectional approach on gender mainstreaming in all EU policies. She also promised an EU Gender Equality Strategy, with new measures on issues such as pay transparency, the gender pay gap, violence against women and gender stereotypes.

MEPs welcomed the President-elect’s decision to appoint an Equality Commissioner for the first time. They put forward questions on several files blocked for years in the EU Council, such as the Women on Boards Directive, the Anti-discrimination Directive or the ratification of the Istanbul Convention on preventing and combating violence against women. Helena Dalli said that she would do her utmost to unblock these essential files, by meeting with ministers to convince them to move forward.

MEPs also questioned her on the protection of sexual and reproductive health and rights, the digital gap faced by women, disability, female genital mutilation (FGM), forced marriages, and the rights of LGBTI people, in particular transgender and inter-sex people.

Based on committees’ recommendations, the Conference of Presidents will decide on 17 October if the European Parliament has received sufficient information to declare the hearing process closed. If so, the plenary will vote on whether or not to approve the Commission as a whole on 23 October, in Strasbourg


Source: medNews


The journalist Martin Micallef, president of the local broadcasting Authority and former director of Malta News Agency, the first Maltese news agency that was created in collaboration with the Italian agency Italpress, passed away last night.

After studying and living for several years in Italy, Martin Micallef embarked on a journalistic career becoming one of the most famous faces of Maltese TV. He has also collaborated with RAI
and with different international media and has been for many years President of the Dante Alighieri Committee of Malta.

Last October , as part of the  celebrations  for the 30th anniversary of Italpress, he was awarded by the mayor of Palermo Leoluca Orlando for his journalistic commitment in the Mediterranean area.

Source: medNews


The Council of Europe has criticized severely the public inquiry in the assassination of journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia which was set up by the Maltese Government because it fails to meet the Council’s expectations.

The Committee on Legal Affairs and Human Rights of the Council of Europe described as “essential” that the inquiry ordered by the Maltese government in the assassination of journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia, investigate potential politicians that could have contributed to the assassination of the journalist. The document issued by the Committee states that the inquiry should investigate whether political activities and persons occupying public office could have contributed to a climate of impunity and an atmosphere of hostility towards journalists like Daphne Caruana Galizia. It also says that the investigation has to establish if this behavior has an affect on the investigations.

This position of the Council was published following recommendations made by Pieter Omtzigt, the rapporteur to the Council of Europe. According to Omtzigt, the inquiry currently does not meet the expectations of the Assembly. The Council requested the Maltese Government to address this urgent concern. 

One of the recommendations mentioned by the Council is the inclusion of international experts on the Board of Inquiry to secure independence and impartiality. Furthermore, the family of Ms. Caruana Galizia should be given the opportunity to present procedural motions, questioning witnesses and making submissions.

The public inquiry was ordered by the Maltese Government following pressure from the Council of Europe. Maltese Prime Minister Joseph Muscat has requested that the public inquiry is to be concluded in nine months. 

In a statement, the Maltese Government declared that it does not have confidence in the integrity of Pieter Omtzigt who has a big problem of credibility because of his involvement during the investigations related to the MH17 aeroplane crash.


Source: medNews


According to the Algerian National Statistics Office (ONS), the production of the public sector in Algeria has increased by 5.6% in the second quarter of 2019, generated by significant improvements in many sectors, placing the average of the first half at 4.9% compared to the same period in 2018. The most important industrial sectors that contributed to this performance are the steel, metallurgy, mechanical, electrical and electronic industries (with an increase of 32.6% during the first six months of 2019), as well as those of leather, footwear and chemical industries. In detail, the production of the iron and steel sector and the processing of cast iron and steel recorded an increase of 155%, the construction of industrial vehicles 97.8%, the manufacture of electrical consumer goods by 64.3%, the manufacture of metal materials of 46.5% and the manufacture of electrical capital goods of 24.4%. However, some declines were recorded for the manufacture of metal capital goods (-72.5%), the production and transformation of non-ferrous metals (-62.8%) and the manufacture of metal furniture (-9.8% ). 


The upward trend started in the second quarter of 2018 for the leather and footwear industries was confirmed in the first quarter of 2019 and reached a growth of over 15%, especially for intermediate goods (+ 20.2%). Production in the chemical industry sector increased by 7.2% in the first quarter of 2019 compared to the same period in 2018. This increase is mainly due to the improvement of the organic chemical branch (+ 112.6%), to manufacturing of other intermediate plastic goods (27.4%), the manufacture of other chemical products (24.3%) and finally the manufacture of pharmaceutical products (+ 3.5%). Production in the energy (electricity) sector recorded an increase of 7.3% in the first half of 2019 compared to the same period in 2018.




Source: medNews


Home Affairs Ministers from five European Union countries together with the European Commissioner responsible for migration Dimitris Avramopulos agreed in Malta on a system to address the disembarkation and relocation of migrants rescued in the Mediterranean Sea.

The Ministers of Malta, Italy, France, Germany and Finland which holds the European Union council presidency, said that this agreement would be presented to the rest of the European Union states in a meeting of the Interior ministers to be held in Luxembourg in October 8. During a press conference in Fort St Angelo, it was confirmed that this agreement is temporary until a permanent procedure comes into force.

The process requires the approval of the majority of the EU countries and then an operational system will be drawn up. The Ministers discussed measures how to control vessels owned by non-governmental organizations; including licensing regulations to ships capable to rescue at sea.

According to the agreement, not only Malta and Italy, but also other member states who voluntarily choose to help in the migration crisis will be involved in the disembarkation process of migrants. As regards the migrant reception centers, once a member state is under pressure, a new mechanism will come into force so that the burden will be shared by other EU states by taking the rescued migrants. The Ministers agreed that countries who are under stress in view of migratory flows are not to be left alone, and a threshold mechanism is to be implemented. 


Source: medNews


The “Forest of violins” of the Val di Fiemme “will descend from the mountains and will reach the lowlands of Cremona, a few meters from the burial of the greatest master of violin making Antonio Stradivari. In the days when the Lombard city will celebrate its violin and musical tradition with the Cremona Musica International Exhibitions and Festival 2019, from September 21st parts of spruces destroyed by the storm Vaia will be exhibited in Piazza Roma in Cremona to raise awareness of environmental issues. Other fir trees will be located near the exhibition pavilions.

From 4.00 pm on September 21st in Bertazzola del Torrazzo the photographic exhibition ‘Rinascita con la musica’ will be opened, which will allow visitors to retrace and see the images of the disastrous event that in October 2018 in a few hours has brought down hundreds of thousands of spruces.

To complete this week of events on the evening of 28 September, the Pianolink Silent Wifi Concert for piano and guitar is scheduled in the Piazza del Comune di Cremona at 9.00 pm. The listeners, through headphones connected wifi, from every point of the square, will be able to enjoy the exhibition through a sort of personalized audition.
The initiatives will be implemented with the support of the Lombardy Region which, in 2019,holds the European presidency of EUSALP – an agreement signed between Italy, France, Germany, Austria, Slovenia, Switzerland and Liechtenstein and their 48 regions and autonomous provinces that are located around the Alpine chain for the development of a macro-regional strategy.



Source: medNews


Starting from next October 1st, Marco Travaglia will be the new president and CEO of Italy and Malta for the Nestlé Group.

Currently a Business Executive Officer at Nestlé Purina PetCare Southern Region, he joined the Nestlé Group in 1990 and has held managerial roles of increasing responsibility in various countries and within various functions of the company, from marketing to sales. Backed by an international career that brought him to Switzerland, USA, France and the United Kingdom, Travaglia returned to Italy in 2003 to lead the Food and Beverage division of Nestlé Italy in the role of general manager, contributing significantly to the growth of the business. Subsequently, from 2010 to 2013 he was able to play the role of Nestlé CEO for the countries of the former Yugoslavia, based in Zagreb, where he started an important process of transformation of the Group with remarkable success that led him to fill the current role within the PetCare category, expanding its responsibility to all markets in Southern Europe, the Middle East and North Africa.


Source: medNews


The Malta Tourism Authority and the English football team of Manchester United have reached a historic agreement that will expose Malta to new markets in America and Asia.

In a visit to Old Trafford, the Minister for Tourism, Konrad Mizzi, said that this partnership with the English team, which has more than a billion supporters around the world, is part of the Government’s strategy to promote Malta as the destination of the Mediterranean.

On Saturday, Malta’s name will start appearing at Old Trafford, which is among the largest stadiums in England with a capacity of 76,000 spectators and further promotion will appear on the social media and other websites.

This is possible through a partnership agreement for the next three years between the Malta Tourism Authority and Manchester United; one of the football teams followed by more than a billion supporters worldwide.

In a visit to the Training Complex of Manchester United, the Minister for Tourism, Konrad Mizzi, said that through this partnership, Malta will increase its visibility tremendously. 

The Chairman of the Malta Tourism Authority, Gavin Gulia, described  this partnership as historic for Malta. “It will serve as a showcase for Malta because Manchester United are known all over the world, and Malta will be promoted worldwide. Tourism is advertising, marketing, and of course this is an important to promote our country and the most important ever had in the history the Malta Tourims Authority. “

First among the United football players intending to visit Malta for the first time is the Spanish international, Juan Mata. “I’ve never been in Malta but I love to travel. I love to discover new countries and new cultures and yes of course, I would like to go at some point to relax and enjoy, probably in summer. Nice food, nice weather and yes, I’m looking forward to it.”

The English club legend, Bryan Robson, has learned about Malta because his wife’s parents had a residence in Msida. “First I went to Malta I was sort of 19 years old so over the last 10 years, I’ve actually went back there. I’ve had some great holidays over in Malta. The beaches are great. Over the years, the hotels have really improved. There’s great bars and restaurants. The weather is always really good, so it’s great island to visit”.


Source: medNews


President elect of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen assigned former Maltese European Affairs and Equality Minister Dr Helena Dalli with the responsibility of the Equality portfolio in the European Commissioners’ College. The proposed political role still needs the final approval of the European Parliament after a public hearing scheduled for the end of this month and the beginning of October.

Helena Dalli is the first woman nominated by the Maltese Government for such role. Since 2013, as a Minister in the Labour Government, she introduced various laws including rights for gay people with the introduction of the civil union. In 2017, Malta became the 24th country in the world to legalise same-sex marriage and Malta is also among just five countries that give LGBT people equal constitutional rights.

Helena Dalli said she is eager to start working for equality in all sectors, once her nomination is approved.

The Maltese Prime Minister Joseph Muscat declared that the European Commissioner President elect made the perfect choice to implement the ambitious vision for equality. Muscat said that Malta’s positive track record and Dalli’s resolve in this sector are both testament to this. In an official statement, the Maltese Government said added that this portfolio is proof of the positive change implemented in Malta in recent years and as it is described by respected international institutions – is considered as a ray of hope.



Source: medNews

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