Malta Retirement Scheme
Foreign nationals looking at taking up residency in Malta or Gozo, have a new financially advantageous programme to entice them, adding to the existing attractions that the Mediterranean islands already offer.
The Maltese authorities have just published a new residency scheme aimed at mature adults considering retiring or taking up residence overseas.
Malta is an ideal place to take up residence. Besides its pleasant climate, safe environment and hospitable English-speaking population, it offers a range of benefits to individuals seeking to acquire residence on the island, given its advantageous tax regime and competitive cost of living. The latest scheme, referred to as the Malta Retirement Programme 2012, forms part of number of new schemes that are being introduced in Malta, offering several financial incentives to attract them to take up residency, relocate or invest in Malta.
By taking up the Malta Retirement Programme (MRP), beneficiaries will be able to benefit from a tax rate of 15% on any income arising outside Malta which is received in Malta by the beneficiary or dependent, with the possibility to claim relief of double taxation. It is ideal for retirees, or persons reaching retirement age, who are looking at taking up residence in a country that offers them the best in terms of climate, lifestyle, health services and peace of mind, whilst also providing very favourable tax benefits.
To qualify for the scheme, the applicant must be an EU national , EEA (Iceland, Norway and Leichenstein) or Swiss national. The following criteria need to be satisfied:
Purchase or rental of a property
To qualify for the scheme, applicants must purchase a property of €275,000 if situated in Malta or €250,000 for a property situated in Gozo. A property purchased before January 2011 will be considered as a “qualifying owned property” as long as at the time of application, the value of the property is not less than the amount indicated above, as supported by a separate and independent architect valuation.
An applicant may also qualify for the scheme if he rents, rather than purchases, a property at the annual rent of €9,600 for a property situated in Malta or €8,750 per annum for a property situated in Gozo.
Receipt of a pension in Malta
Applicants must be in receipt of a pension as supported by documentary evidence, all of which is received in Malta and constitutes at least 75% of the beneficiary’s chargeable income.
Applicant must reside in Malta for not less than 90 days a year, averaged over any five year period. He may not stay in any other jurisdiction for more than 183 days in a calendar year.
Applicant may not be a beneficiary under any other scheme. He/She must not be a Maltese National nor a third country national (Non EU).
Applicant must be in possession of a valid travel document
Applicant must be in possession of sickness insurance in respect of all risks across the whole of the EU normally covered for Maltese nationals, for himself and his dependants
Applicant must not be domiciled in Malta and he does not, within five years from date of application, intend to establish domicile in Malta.
An application fee of €2,500 is chargeable for each application.
Tax is chargeable at the rate of 15% on any income arising outside Malta which is received in Malta by the beneficiary or dependent, with the possibility to claim relief of double taxation.
Minimum amount of tax payable in terms of this scheme for any year of assessment shall amount to €7,500 in respect of the beneficiary and €500 per year for every dependent.
Income of a beneficiary or dependent not falling under the scheme, shall be charged as separate income at the rate of 35%
Other popular residency schemes available to those considering Malta, include the Ordinary Residency Scheme and the High Net Worth Scheme, both being available to both EU and non-EU nationals.