Reaping the benefits of EU funds for Malta

Article written by Abigail Ciantar, Executive EU Funding at SEM

Over the past weeks, the European Commission has been approving the priorities and expected investments put forward by Malta in a financial package worth €2.3 billion in European Union funding. The funds will be part of the 2021-2027 multi-annual financial framework.

€817 million of these funds will be allocated to support SMEs, to improve access to employment, to invest in inclusive education, and to strengthen the sustainability of Malta’s agriculture and fisheries sectors. EU funds have also been earmarked for a decarbonisation project in Malta’s international ports - the Grand Harbour and the Malta Freeport.

Funding will also be allocated to Malta under the Erasmus+ programme 2021-2027. It is the main EU funding programme in the fields of education, training, youth and sport. The programme finances projects in the fields of youth empowerment, education and training opportunities, collaboration among different countries (both EU and non-EU) and projects promoting sport and physical activity.

Malta is also allocated funding under the European Solidarity Corps - the EU’s main funding programme for solidarity and volunteering. Between 2018 and 2020, just under a half million European youths expressed interest in participating in the programme. Based on this successful journey, such activities will also continue for 2021-2027. With a budget of over €1 billion, the European Commission anticipates that the programme will rope in the participation of at least 270,000 young people to address societal and humanitarian challenges throughout Europe.

Funds from the European Solidarity Corps programme represents an opportunity to help the wider community, at the national, European and international levels. Participants can be involved in projects which aim to make a difference to communities through volunteering and can cover various topics such as education and training, social inclusion, citizenship and democratic participation, environment and natural protection, migration, culture, etc. The funds can cover projects carried out locally, as well as projects involving hosting foreign volunteers or sending local volunteers abroad, either to Europe or beyond European borders.

These funding opportunities enable EU citizens to make the most of their right to the freedom of movement, through travel opportunities for students, staff from schools and other organisations, trainees, apprentices, volunteers, youth workers and young people.

Aside from funding earmarked specifically for Malta, local entities can benefit from EU funding opportunities managed by the European Commission. This includes among others schemes for businesses, opportunities for policy-making, funding for town twinning, opportunities for collaboration among Malta-based entities and entities based abroad as well as numerous other funding opportunities under around 50 different funding programmes.

A summary of available EU funding programmes 2021-2027 can be found on the website of Servizzi Ewropej f’Malta (SEM) - a government agency serving as a gateway to EU funds. The SEM website is also updated twice weekly with currently available EU funding opportunities.

SEM can assist local entities and individuals with the application process, including the completion of application forms for EU funding. Guidance can also be provided during project implementation for a holistic service which aims to make EU funding more accessible for local entities.

For more information on EU funding opportunities and how SEM can assist you to access funding, please contact SEM on 2279 7300, or by visiting