Malta News Briefing – Sunday 5 November 2023

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Reading Time: 3 minutes

Morning Briefing

Yorgen Fenech ruled out from links to other bombings

Yorgen Fenech has been excluded as a suspect in five other bombing cases that were examined in a comparative study to determine the source of the explosive used in the fatal attack on Daphne Caruana Galizia. This information came to light as Fenech, who is awaiting trial on charges related to the journalist’s assassination, appeared before the Criminal Court for another pre-trial session. During the preceding hearing, the defense had emphasized Fenech’s denial of being the mastermind behind the murder and urged the prosecution to thoroughly investigate and identify the true mastermind. These pre-trial proceedings stem from the Court of Criminal Appeal’s October ruling on several preliminary objections raised by Fenech’s legal team. (Times of Malta)

Greens say budget creates sense of dependency

The Green Party ADPD has accused the government of adopting a contradictory stance in its budget rhetoric. They argue that while the government downplays its “collusion” with private hospital concessionaires, it is simultaneously distributing financial incentives in its Budget for 2024. Mina Jack Tolu, the Deputy Chairperson of ADPD and a candidate for the European Parliament (EP), pointed out that the Commissioner of Police has yet to conclude the investigation into the Steward hospitals deal. Tolu questioned the budget’s theme, asking, “A fair Malta for whom?” She highlighted concerns about fairness, suggesting that the government is lenient with powerful entities but harsh on smaller individuals. She also criticized the prevailing culture of impunity in the country, which has given rise to scandals like the social benefits fraud designed to secure votes. While some fraudulent beneficiaries have faced legal consequences, those who facilitated and abetted this fraud have not been prosecuted. Tolu raised the question of what is fair in this context. (Maltatoday)

Malta to export tuna to China

During his visit to China, Ian Borg, the Minister for Foreign and European and Commerce, officially inked an agreement on behalf of the Government with Vice Minister Wang Lingjun. This agreement paves the way for Malta to commence exporting tuna to China, thereby establishing a novel economic sector of cooperation between the two nations. Minister Borg emphasized that discussions regarding this significant sector had been in progress for several months. He expressed the view that this agreement would fortify the extensive array of commercial agreements Malta has established globally, contributing to the ongoing expansion of Maltese product exports. Furthermore, Minister Borg highlighted that China, as a prominent economic powerhouse, is not the sole country entering into such agreements in the tuna sector. Malta already exports tuna to Japan and South Korea. He outlined the intention to extend these types of agreements to additional nations, emphasizing the Government’s commitment to supporting Maltese and Gozitan enterprises in their efforts to explore international markets. This, in turn, would reinforce and augment their operations and contribute to Malta’s sustained economic prosperity. (TVM)

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