Most people would put the economy at the top of their list of achievements of five years of a Labour government, and they’d not be wrong. Our economic growth is higher than most in Europe. All the international rating agencies recognise how well Malta is performing, the country is now in surplus and unemployment is at a record low. This new prosperity is enabling the Government to deliver better services and look after the less well off. In some countries young people leave school and go straight on the dole. Here they get the dignity of work.
The Labour government hasn’t just turned things around it has laid the foundations for future prosperity with far reaching reforms that will serve us well for years to come. The new power station means lower bills and cleaner air and gives security of supply. Investment in education will deliver a skilled economy. The health reforms will provide the best treatment. A seven-year programme to repair every road in Malta is about providing the infrastructure for the economy to expand further. There’s a new attitude everywhere, from reforms in the justice sector to a Foreign Ministry that promotes trade.
This attitude extends to innovation. How many other countries provide universal free childcare? Our citizenship scheme has been a multi-million Euro success. And we hope to lead the way in block chain technology legislation and the production of medical marijuana.
Society is changing in many ways. We have always been open to visitors, both investors and tourists, but we’re now more open to each other. The introduction of divorce, a PL achievement over PN conservatism even before coming to power, didn’t rock the foundations of this rock, it just gave people a second chance in life. It was the same with equal marriage and one of the most progressive transgender laws in the world. We have surprised ourselves with the extent of our compassion.
Of course, not everything has gone well and there are many challenges ahead but when people are asked “is life better now than it was five years ago?” I think most would answer Yes.