Malta retirement programme

The Malta Retirement Programme Rules (the “Rules”), enacted by Legal Notice 317 of 2012, provides for a Malta Special Tax Status which can be availed of by all EU/EEA/Swiss individual pensioners. The Malta Retirement Programme rules entitle successful applicants to a Special Tax Status provided they comply with a number of criteria listed hereunder.

Tax treatment

  • All foreign sourced income which is remitted to Malta shall be taxable at 15%, with the possibility of claiming double tax relief on such income subject to a minimum tax of €7,500 annually;
  • A beneficiary with dependents must pay an additional €500 per year for every dependent and every special carer;
  • Any other chargeable income received by the beneficiary will be charged to tax at the rate of 35%;
  • Possibility to claim double tax relief while any income arising in Malta is subject to tax at 35%.


In order to qualify for the benefits provided for in the Rules the applicant must:

  • hold a qualifying property which must be occupied only by the applicant, dependents and/or carers;
  • A qualifying property means a property purchased after 1st January 2011 situated in Malta for a value of €275,000 or situated in Gozo for a value of €250,000:

a property purchased after 1st January 2013 situated either in Malta for a value of €275,000 or situated in Gozo or the South of Malta for a value of €220,000;

a special concession applies to property which was purchased before 1st January 2011, which considers the value of such property to be that as at the date of application;

a rented qualifying property of at least €9,600 per annum for a property situated in Malta or €8,750 per annum for a property situated in Gozo or the South of Malta;

  • receive the whole amount of a pension in Malta, which pension constitutes at least 75% of the beneficiary’s chargeable income;
  • not be a Maltese or a third country national;
  • not be domiciled in Malta nor intend to establish his domicile in Malta within 5 years from application date;
  • not benefit under any other Malta Special Tax Status or be in employment;
  • be in possession of sickness insurance in respect of all risks across the whole of the European Union normally covered for Maltese Nationals for himself and his dependents;
  • be in possession of a valid travel document;
  • be a fit and proper person.

Ongoing business

In order to maintain one's special tax status, a beneficiary is required to:

  • retain qualifying property holding (as defined above);
  • not become a Maltese or third country national;
  • not become domiciled in Malta;
  • retain the necessary insurance;
  • be physically present in Malta for more than 90 days a year averaged over a period of five years;
  • not stay in any other jurisdiction for more than 183 days; and
  • adhere to all special reporting obligations and notifications.

Application process

Applications for special tax status under the Rules are to be made to the Government of Malta through any Maltese Authorised Registered Mandatory. Grant Thornton is authorised and regulated by the Government of Malta to handle and submit applications for residence permits under the various residence programmes available under Maltese Law.

Employment in Malta

Individuals benefitting from this programme may only hold a non-executive post on the board of a company resident in Malta. This implies that the beneficiary would be prohibited from being employed by the company in any capacity.

Such individuals may also partake in activities related to any institution, trust or foundation of a public character and any other similar organisation or body of persons, which are also of a public character, that is engaged in philanthropic, educational or research and development work in Malta.

Registration fee

A non-refundable one-off registration fee of €2,500 must be paid by the applicant upon submitting the application.

Our immigration services

Grant Thornton has extensive experience in the areas of citizenship and residence planning and in the handling of legal and tax matters relevant to the structuring and planning of personal wealth and personal interests and business worldwide having built a sterling reputation. Our Citizenship & Residence Planning team is led by partner Dr Wayne Pisani. 

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Partner | Head of tax, regulatory and compliance | International Liaison Director
Wayne Pisani
Wayne Pisani
Partner | Head of tax, regulatory and compliance | International Liaison Director
Wayne Pisani