SME Chamber organises an information session on the Customs Department new IT system

The Malta Chamber of SMEs organised an online information session for its members about the Customs Malta new IT system as during 2023 the Customs department will be introducing changes in its IT systems which will bring about a number of changes to the current procedure.

The aim of this to achieve a paperless customs environment by 2025.

As part of The EU customs work programme shall see the implementation of all customs procedures using electronic data-processing techniques. A new coding system and new data requirements according to the EU Customs Data Model (EUCDM) shall feature in the new Automated Import System (AIS).

During this information session, the Malta Chamber of SMEs, together with the Customs Department highlighted these changes.

Malta Chamber of SMEs launches the SME Barometer® in collaboration with MISCO

The SME Barometer® will be the official indicator on the state of business in Malta

The Malta Chamber of SMEs has today launched the SME Barometer® in collaboration with MISCO. The SME Barometer®  will present quarterly surveys which give insights through scientific data on economic trends, business sentiment and state of enterprises in Malta. 

Malta Chamber of SMEs CEO, Ms. Abigail Agius Mamo said that the SME Chamber conducts regular research with its members and we are proud to enhance an already successful practice through our collaboration with MISCO. MISCO is surely a household name in research, which is synonymous with excellence and of admirable repute. The SME Chamber is therefore proud to partner with MISCO to bring to the fore economic and social indicators for the benefit and service of the business community and the country as a whole.

Data gathered will be made available to the general public and will provide visibility on the most important issues our country and enterprises are facing periodically. The SME Barometer®  will also be key in identifying future threats and propose ways on how these can be mitigated.

MISCO founding partner, Mr. Lawrence Zammit, said “over the last 40 years MISCO has sought to contribute to a better understanding of Malta’s business environment. MISCO is proud to collaborate with the Malta Chamber of SMEs through its expertise and insight on this project, which it hopes will become a point of reference for the business sector and for policy makers.”

The first joint survey conducted will be the annual business performance survey published shortly, later on in January.

The Government in collaboration with the SME Chamber launched an information campaign entitled ‘Be Efficient. Save Energy!’

The Ministry for the Environment, Energy and Enterprise,together with the Malta Chamber of SMEs and other social partners, launched an information campaign promoting energy efficiency for businesses in Malta and Gozo.

The campaign, ‘Be Efficient. Save Energy!’ will provide guidance on how different economic sectors can reduce energy consumption in their operations.

With the participation of nine associations representing the island’s principal economic sectors, this campaign was planned in response to these organisations’ proposal to participate in the government’s efforts to promote responsible energy use.

“After launching the educational campaign for efficient energy use in households and introducing energy saving initiatives for the public sector, we were approached by some associations who wanted to help in this initiative. In this regard, the government had already embarked on its plan to ensure energy price stability. Therefore, as a ministry we worked to develop an information campaign on sustainable and efficient energy use,” explained Minister for theEnvironment, Energy and Enterprise Miriam Dalli.

The campaign will be spread over several months and will see business and professional organisations sharing suggestions with their members, on how they can consume less energy, according to their sector, and explain how with small changes and environmental investments can lead to drastic reductions in energy costs and carbon footprint.

Thus, with the use of social media, e-newsletters, television adverts and other communications, this campaign will encourage more businesses to join in this initiative towards modern and sustainable operations, which will ultimately lead to a more sustainable future in energyconsumption.

On an international level, 2022 was a critical year for the energy sector, as energy prices reached unprecedent levels. In Malta, the government worked to ensure stability, a commitment which was also sustained in this year’s budget. At thesame time, the environment ministry is committed to continue pushing forward its policy and vision for increased investment in renewable energy, efficiency and sustainable technologies. This also includes several support schemes by different entities within the same ministry.

“Through this campaign we are presenting businesses with energy saving tips chosen by technical experts working in different sectors.We strongly believe that after witnessing the challenges experienced by other countries because of the ongoing energy crisis, everyone acknowledges the importance of energy efficiency,” stated Minister Miriam Dalli.More information about this campaign can be obtained from the websites of the participating associations.

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“At ZeroBubble, we take great care in understanding our customer’s pain points, and we help them find the right tools they need to drive their retail business forward. We know it’s challenging to navigate through the different layers of complexity to set up a robust POS system, and we make that journey easy for our customers,” states Chris Ellul, ZeroBubble’s managing director.

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One of the key benefits of a cloud environment is scalability. Choose the tools that work for you today but give you the flexibility to grow as your business expands.

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SME Chamber and HSBC Malta Foundation organises the 5th webinar on sustainable practices for your business

The Malta Chamber of SMEs and HSBC Malta Foundation organised the 5th webinar throughout 2022 entitled Sustainability for Small Businesses.

The webinar was delivered by Dr Roberta Lepre from WEAVE CONSULTING and focused on case studies relating to sustainability and grants and funding schemes available for businesses.

The session was moderated by Mr Glenn Bugeja.

Click here to view webinar.

Should you wish to join our next session please contact us on .

More consumers shopping during Black Friday but average spend lower

This Black Friday is the closest one to pre-Covid levels with shoppers flocking the streets for Black Friday, from the early hours of the day. Shop owners explain how the eagerness and will to shop is evident but at the same time cutomers are also being more careful in their spending.

Attributing the lower spending to inflationary issues, and this affecting purchasing power, consumers appear to have retained some of the spending trends we have seen during Covid, with appliances, household electronics and brown goods, having a very good November.

Similarly, more affordable brands within the fashion industry and costume jewellery exceeded expectations since they did very well. High end brands with a higher price tag did not do so well in comparison.

It is evident that different sectors have started adopting different strategies in how they time their offers. Some have extended their offers to cover most of November while others are sticking to the black Friday weekend.

Overall businesses are very pleased that despite the negative global feeling and inflationary pressures, they saw their clients eager once again on Black Friday, eager to shop and also to buy gifts. Black Friday has once again started establishing itself as a very important milestone for businesses, following 2 years of Covid downturn.

Successful SME 2022 Conference attracts 300 business owners

The Malta Chamber of SMEs in collaboration with Business first and Malta Enterprise on Thursday organised the SME Conference 2022 with the main theme being SMEs Maximising resources.

300 participants attended the conference which focused on the main challenges and businesses are facing. This includes boosting productivity and employee retention, sourcing foreign workers of quality, digital investments and achieving sustainability.

Malta Chamber of SMEs President Mr Paul Abela said that now that Covid is something of the past, we encourage SME’s to continue to look forward and invest, while working to Maximise their resources in order to combat the current challenges.

Enterprise Minister Hon. Miriam Dalli reiterated the Government’s commitment to support companies in their twin transition towards a sustainable and digital business model whilst becoming more competitive. “Budget 2023 will see the doubling of the financial assistance provided to companies by Malta Enterprise, which together with the Family Business Office and Business First will remain a key enabler of growth for our SMEs in the years to come,” Minister Dalli said.

Hon. Silvio Schembri, Minister for the Economy, EU Funds and Lands, during his address to small and medium-sized businesses stated that the Government’s assistance to businesses is helping to operate smoothly and further scaling up their operations.

Among the measures, he mentioned the recovery plan where businesses can apply for funds to further improve their operation, both in digital and energy-efficient terms.

The SME Conference is well renowned for its organised networking sessions and participants had the opportunity to network with fellow business people from different sectors.

SME Chamber participated during a conference by the Malta Sustainability Forum organised by APS Bank

The discussion focused on the Voluntary Occupational Retirement Pension

SME Chamber Vice President, Michael Galea, participated in a panel discussion during a conference by the Malta Sustainability Forum organised by APS Bank.
The panel discussed the outcome of the survey findings held recently by Misco for APS bank with the theme “Voluntary Occupational Retirement Pension” bridging the pension gap.

The conference focused on the pension sustainability and adequacy which were held through a broad spectrum of speakers, including the finance minister Mr Clyde Caruana, social partners, employers, unions and other local and foreign experts.

The topics addressed by Mr Galea revolved around the property dynamics, the knock on effect of the property market on the Maltese economy. The trust that the Maltese people have towards this sector in terms of capital appreciation and return on investment which can serve as a second pension when the owner of the property arrives at retirement age.

The take up of the Voluntary Occupational Retirement Scheme was also addressed and what challenges the market is facing to reach the targets that one expects after seven years from the launch in 2015.

As a way forward it is being recommended that an automatic enrolment pension scheme will replace the existing scheme so as to encourage more people taking on the second pillar pension even from an early stage from when a person gets employed. It is being recommended that this scheme will also have an opt out option.