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Representation in Malta

EU budget for Malta

From 2004 up to 2018, Malta was a net recipient, in nominal terms, of over  €1 billion in EU funds. Since its membership of the European Union, the country has been a net beneficiary of EU funding.

Since the 1960s, EU member countries have pooled resources together to finance projects that make a difference to the lives of European citizens. Today, this includes creating growth and jobs, environmental protection, reducing economic gaps between EU regions and combatting terrorism and organised crime.

The EU budget also permits a significant level of investment in research and innovation so that Europe can compete with other global players; more so than if each member country went it alone.

For Malta, the EU budget has been supporting job creation, business competitiveness, economic growth, and the improvement of Maltese citizens’ quality of life.

How the EU budget works in Malta

The EU budget is complementary to Malta’s national budget and comes into play when it is more effective to spend money at the EU level than at the local, regional or national level. In 2019, Malta contributed €123 million of the total EU revenue of €165 billion.

In the same year, EU investment back into Malta included:

·       €30.1 million on sustainable growth: natural resources

·       €170 million on smart and inclusive growth, and

·       €52 million on security and citizenship

In addition to the investment in Malta, the EU budget provides support in other areas, including:

·       Economic development of less wealthy EU countries

·       Assistance in situations of natural disasters

·       Development aid and assistance to EU neighbours and third countries

What are the main EU investment areas for Malta?

The EU budget provides financial support to an array of beneficiaries in Malta. Most of Malta’s EU funding is for growth and jobs, including investments in education and training and regional policy.

Recent projects supported by EU funding include:

  • The development of a specialised Oncology Centre, which received €41 482 300 from the EU’s European Regional Development Fund. 
  • A major upgrade of sections of Malta’s TEN-T road network, with help from EU funding to the tune of €42 364 293. 
  • The building of a world class life sciences research facility, which received €15 300 000 from the EU’s European Regional Development Fund. 

for more, see our EU success stories

EU budget 2021-2027

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the European Union has strengthened its current long-term 2021-2027 budget. Together with a temporary NextGenerationEU recovery instrument, €2.018 trillion was made available to mitigate the damage caused by the pandemic and help Europe emerge from the crisis stronger and more resilient.

Malta is set to receive €316.4 million in Recovery and Resilience Facility grants. There will also be €112 million available in 2021 under REACT-EU and €21 million from the Just Transition Fund. Malta will also receive €838 million in Cohesion Policy allocations from the latest long-term EU budget. 

EU recovery plan and NextGenerationEU for Malta

The EU budget powering the recovery plan for Europe

More detail on Malta’s (and other EU countries) budgets

EU long-term budget 2021-2027

The EU’s 2021-2027 long-term budget & NextGenerationEU: Facts and figures


Background Information

How does the EU-wide budget work?

The EU budget is mainly dedicated to investment, so a long-term spending plan, known as the Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) is adopted for a period of five to seven years. The MFF sets the maximum annual amounts (ceilings) that the EU will spend on each different category (headings).

Everybody benefits from the EU budget: from the added value of being part of the single market, and also addressing challenges together, such as fighting climate change, strengthening digital sovereignty and responding to the COVID-19 crisis.

The annual EU budget is decided democratically, with the participation of the European Commission, the EU countries (represented in the Council) and the European Parliament:

·       The European Commission proposes a draft annual budget

·       National governments (Council of the EU) and the European Parliament (representing EU citizens) can amend it

·       National governments (Council of the EU) and the European Parliament (representing EU citizens) must approve it.


Where does the money come from?

The EU budget is financed from the following sources:

·       A proportion of each country’s gross national income (GNI)  in line with how wealthy they  are

·       Customs duties on imports from outside the EU

·       An amount based on the value added tax collected by each EU country

·       From 2021, a contribution based on the amount of non-recycled plastic packaging waste in each country

·       Other revenue, including contributions from non-EU countries to certain programmes, interest on late payments and fines, as well as surplus from the previous year

·       To finance NextGenerationEU, the European Commission will raise funds on the capital markets which will be repaid over a long-time horizon until 2058


Who decides how the money is spent?

Over the 2021-2027 period:

·       National authorities manage around three quarters of  the budget expenditure jointly with the European Commission (shared management)

·       The European Commission and its agencies and delegations manage around 18% of the EU budget (direct management)

·       Other international organisations, national agencies or third countries manage 8% of the EU budget (indirect management)

·       For NextGenerationEU, 90% of the funds will be channelled via the Recovery and Resilience Facility (RRF). The RRF is an instrument to offer grants and loans to support reforms and investments in the EU countries at a total value of €723.8 billion.

The Commission has the ultimate responsibility for the execution of the totality of the budget to ensure that every euro spent is recorded and accounted for.

·       The accounts are then audited by the Commission, national governments and other organisations, and actions are taken to address any weaknesses or errors.

·       Finally, the European Parliament (in the name of EU citizens) votes to approve (or ‘discharge’) how the Commission has implemented the budget.


How the annual EU budget lifecycle works

The EU also has a number of bodies and tools to transparently communicate, and to detect, investigate and punish improper use of EU funds, corruption, the evasion of related taxes and levees, or serious misconduct within the EU institutions.

EU anti-fraud measures

European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF) 


Related links

The EU budget at a glance

Legislative documents on the EU budget

See who in Malta has received EU funding