Malta. According to countryaah, the current population of Malta is 441,554. Thousands of protesters demanded the resignation of Prime Minister Joseph Muscat in April, after his chief of staff and the country’s energy minister were caught with tax planning linked to law firm Mossack Fonseca in Panama.
In order to bridge the contradictions within the EU about the future asylum policy of the Union, Malta, Germany, Italy and the Czech Republic formed a group to carry on discussions on refugee policy as Malta becomes the EU Presidency in the spring of 2017. The group’s aim was to try to find compromises between countries in eastern and western Europe.
Five people died in a plane crash in October. According to thereligionfaqs, the accident occurred shortly after the plane, which was on its way to Misrata in Libya, lifted from Malta. According to a military source at the airport, they were dead French nationals.
During the autumn, Malta’s Financial Supervisory Authority received criticism in Sweden after it was revealed that several Maltese-registered fund companies, players in the Swedish Pension Authority’s Fund Square for Premium Pension Capital, have engaged in suspected illegal activities. Among other things, the fund company Falcon Funds based in Malta was charged with questionable investments and for having external advisers use Swedish pension savers’ electronic ID to change funds to Falcon. In June, the Pensions Agency broke the agreement with Falcon, while demanding redemption of the Swedish shares in the company, corresponding to a value of SEK 2.4 billion. When Falcon only paid SEK 730 million in October, the Swedish Pensions Agency notified the company. In a letter to Sweden’s Finance Minister Per Bolund, Falcon wrote that the money was in custody at the Bank of Valletta and would be sent “when the assets were sold”. The letter was signed by Falcon’s chairman Tonio Fenech, who was Malta’s finance minister until 2013. According to data in November, the Swedish pension savers’ money in Falcon Funds had collapsed in value by between 32 and 59%.