The Skills Development Scheme

On the 23 January 2024, Malta Enterprise published a new set of guidelines for The Skills Development Scheme, which aims to encourage businesses to invest in their employees by providing assistance on training to have a knowledge-based workforce. This measure will be open until 30 September 2026.

Through the Skills Development Scheme business undertakings may be supported to provide training with the scope of developing and updating the skills and knowledge of their workforce thus aiding them to perform more effectively.

The training provided shall upgrade existing skills of employees, address skills shortages, facilitate re-skilling, tackle skill gaps and strive towards developing a knowledge-based workforce.

Who is eligible for this scheme?

This scheme is open for  registered undertakings (including self-employed) carrying out an qualifying economic activity in Malta. Applicants must not be defaulting on Income Tax, VAT and Social Security payments and must not be considered Undertakings in Difficulty

What industries are covered by this scheme?

This scheme targets specific sectors, more specifically those undertakings engaged in the following:

  • Agriculture, forestry and fishing    
  • Manufacturing   
  • Water supply, sewerage,
  • waste management and remediation activities  Construction 
  • Retail trade, except of motor vehicles and motorcycles  
  • Transportation and storage  
  • Accommodation and food service activities  
  • Information and Communication 
  • Financial and Insurance activities  
  • Professional, scientific and technical activities  
  • Administrative and support service activities  
  • Education  
  • Human health and social work activities  
  • Arts, entertainment and recreation  
  • Other Service Activities

How is assistance granted?

Support may be awarded in the form of Tax Credits, Cash Grants, or a combination of these forms of aid.

The aid intensity applicable shall be capped at the following percentages of the eligible costs:

  • Small undertakings – 70%
  • Medium undertakings – 60%
  • Large undertakings – 50%

The aid intensity may be increased by 10% when training is provided to workers with disabilities, yet in no instance shall the aid intensity exceed 70%

What costs are covered by this scheme?

Support will be provided in relation to following costs

a) Wage costs of trainees, covering direct contact hours during which the trainer and trainee are interacting as part of an approved training programme, whether this is delivered physically or online;

b) Wage costs of internal trainers, covering direct contact hours during which the trainer is delivering the training irrespective of whether the training is delivered physically or online;

c) Hourly costs covering direct contact hours of training provided by an external expert engaged to deliver training irrespective of whether the training is delivered physically or online;

d) Air travel expenses incurred to send trainees to foreign training locations if the training is not available locally and it is more economically feasible than holding the training locally;

e) Air travel expenses incurred to bring trainers to Malta.

In order for training to be eligible it needs to meet at least one of the following criteria:

a) training that leads to the acquisition of skills, knowhow or knowledge directly related to the business operations of the applicant undertaking and the development of the current and future function of the trainees within the organisation;

b) training provided to non-Maltese employees to support them in learning the Maltese language and culture;

c) training in the use of digital technologies, digital communications, cyber security, and other topics related to digitisation;

d) training on improving the applicant’s position vis-a-vis Environmental, Social and Corporate Governance practices.

Training shall be provided by trainers employed by the applicant or engaged specifically for the delivery of the training. The training must:

  • Be delivered to at least 5 employees, and that has a duration of at least 6 hours; OR
  • have the scope of training employees in the use of heavy machinery and specialised equipment and requires individual or group training sessions of not less than 4 hours; OR
  • have as the scope of training workers with disabilities or disadvantaged workers in carrying out their roles.

Should you require any further assistance or require any further information about the reduced rate of tax, do not hesitate to contact us so that we may assist you.

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