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Fast-Tracked Services To Highly-Specialised Third Country Nationals: The New Maltese Key Employee Initiative Programme (KEI Programme)

GVZH Advocates
05 April, 2017

Malta has recently introduced the Key Employee Initiative ("KEI") Programme in order to facilitate the issuing of work / residence permits to highly qualified/specialised Third Country Nationals ("TCNs") who wish to reside and work in Malta.


The KEI scheme is applicable to managerial or highly-technical posts which require the relevant qualification or adequate experience related to the job being offered.

Applicants have to be in possession of the following eligibility criteria:

  • To receive an annual gross salary of at least Eur30,000 per annum;
  • To provide certified copies of the relevant qualifications, warrants or the necessary work experience;
  • To submit a declaration by the prospective employer in Malta stating that the applicant has the necessary credentials to perform the duties being assigned.

Additionally, the KEI scheme applies to innovators involved in start-up projects which are specifically endorsed by the Malta Enterprise.


Applications and all relevant documentation for a single permit under the KEI scheme may be submitted while the applicant is physically in Malta or still abroad.

Should the KEI application be accepted, the TCN would be provided with a work permit in Malta valid for the period of one year. Said permit may be renewed for a maximum period of three years, subject to the presentation of a valid definite or indefinite contract of employment, and the original annual tax declaration form stamped by the Inland Revenue Department.


According to the guidelines recently provided by Identity Malta, KEI work / residence permits shall be issued within five working days from the date of submission of the KEI application.

For further information on how GVZH can help with your work permit in Malta, please contact us here.


About the Author

GVZH Advocates

GVZH Advocates is a modern and sophisticated legal practice composed of top-tier professionals, firmly rooted in decades of experience in the Maltese legal landscape. Built on the values of acumen, integrity and clarity, we are dedicated to providing the highest levels of customer satisfaction, making sure that legal solutions are not only soundly rooted and rigorously tested, but also meticulously implemented. www.gvzh.com.mt


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