Property in Malta is looking like an attractive investment as prices here have continued to increase in spite of the global downturn. The prices of property advertised increased by 1.5% during the third quarter of 2010, which followed an increase of 0.5% in the previous quarter. The increase in asking prices might not seem like much, but when compared to the price decreases still being registered in many countries it looks pretty impressive.

Malta is an attractive country in which to buy property as it has good connections to other European cities and an excellent year-round climate, and it is just a three hour flight from the UK. The costs here are relatively low, and there is the possibility that buying property here gives owners permanent residence status. This factor makes property here extremely attractive to those outside the EU who then have the freedom to travel and live in countries within the EU.

Permanent residents can benefit from the low tax rate of 15% on income generated within the country or bought into Malta, with no minimum stay in the country being required. The tax laws here make it extremely attractive to retirees as UK pensions received by those in possession of a Maltese permanent residence permit can be taxed in Malta alone.

Malta only adopted the euro in January 2008, and managed to avoid much of the economic downturn, which is partly due to the stability of the banking system here as it has benefited from its prudent risk management strategies. The high cost of electricity and water prices did damage the economy as Malta only produces about 20% of its food needs and has limited freshwater, and very little domestic energy sources.