Expats on Malta getting mixed reactions from locals

Expats on Malta getting mixed reactions from locals

Expats on Malta getting mixed reactions from locals

Would be expats heading for Malta might do well to change their minds.

Once known as one of the world’s most welcoming destinations for expats, Malta is now turning to expat-bashing due to its issues with the coronavirus pandemic. British expats who’ve lived, worked or retired on the island for many years are now having to face racist comments blaming them for the spread of the infection.

The spur for this regretful change in attitude would appear to be certain comments made by the current Minister for the Economy, Silvio Schembri. Earlier this week, Schembri stated that, once third-country workers lost their jobs they would be sent back to their home countries. His comment didn’t go down well on one Facebook group, with the majority of posters being Maltese citizens who apologised on behalf of their community and called for unity amongst all Maltese residents.

One expat resident at present locked down in Germany told it like it is, saying the minister’s comments don’t represent the positions and opinions of the Maltese people themselves. He added his Maltese neighbours call to check on him every day, and were eager to help him get back to his Maltese home. Another expatriate praised his kindly landlord for his advice to forget about paying rent until the situation changes, adding his tenant’s safety was mpre important than his rent money.

Many expat professionals holding Maltese work permits are worried about the permit’s renewal, with some saying they’d received emails telling them to make repatriation arrangements as their residence visas and work permits won’t be renewed after their work contracts expire. Many are now requiring immediate clarification of their situations. On the positive side, one worker in Malta’s popular gaming sector has pledged a percentage of his salary to help expats in need.

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