[source=http://www.timesofmalta.com/articles/view/20160626/local/malta-coud-be-uk-gateway-to-the-eu-muscat-says.616861]Malta could be UK gateway to the EU, Muscat says
'Brexit is a challenge in which there are opportunities'[/source]
Prime Minister Joseph Muscat said today that Malta could in the future be a gateway of the UK to the European Union.
Speaking in a One Radio interview, Dr Muscat said Malta was economically strong and prepared to face the withdrawal of the UK from the EU with confidence.
Brexit could have an impact on tourism and financial markets, among other things, he said, but local planning for a possible UK exit started months ago and Malta would seek the benefits which this development could bring about, such as attracting companies which decided to leave the UK.
"This is a challenge in which there are opportunities," Dr Muscat said.
He said that while he was disappointed by the outcome of the UK vote, he was also disappointed by the reaction in some EU quarters which painted a 'we are right and they are wrong picture'.
The EU, he said, should investigate the reasons why so many people voted Leave. Not doing so would continue to push people into the arms of the extremist parties. Socialist parties, in particular, should be the natural home of others. People who complained that migration could cost them their jobs should not be branded racists, he said.
One needed to see their point of view, and Europe should rid itself of arrogance and its belief that only it was right.
"There are lessons in this for everyone," he insisted.
The prime minister also cautioned that there would be no changes in the next two years affecting Britons in Malta or Maltese in the UK. The treatment of Maltese in the UK and vice versa would not be affected as this was governed by bilateral issues.
However in the future, if there was no new arrangement, there could be an issue for Maltese students in the UK, who could see their fees double. Hopefully there would be a UK-EU agreement about it, otherwise Malta would seek its own arrangement.
A meeting has already been held with the British High Commissioner to forge bilateral agreements on various areas.
Malta and the UK had historical links and frequently saw eye to eye, he said. This should be exploited. "Now we need each other more than before," he said.
U l-Kotra qamet f’daqqa – u għajtet: “Jien Maltija!
Miskin min ikasbarni, - miskin min jidħak bija!”
U l-Kotra għanniet f’daqqa – u semmgħet ma’ l-irjieħ
L-Innu ta’ Malta tagħna, – u l-leħen kien rebbieħ,