Currency Updates

Currency in Malta

Malta is one of the world’s most popular tourist destinations. The small archipelago features a great climate, three UNESCO World Heritage Sites, lots of recreational areas and a number of megalithic temples. The islands of Malta are also frequently used for film locations, often as a “double” for other countries. The country is one of the smallest in the world. Valletta, the capital, is just under a square kilometre in size and is the smallest in the European Union. There are a couple of commonly asked questions by those planning a trip to Malta with one of the more commonly asked questions being “what currency does Malta use?”

The TransferGo Blog answers that question along with many others.

How was Malta formed?

The country is located on what was once a land bridge between North Africa and Sicily around the Ice Age. Rising sea levels eventually isolated the archipelago.

How many islands make up Malta?

The archipelago of Malta consists of two islands, Malta and Gozo.

What is the population of Gozo?

Gozo is the smaller of the two islands. Gozo is known for its scenic hills and rural beauty. Less than 10 percent of Malta’s population of around 500,000 live on Gozo.

Gozo is the legendary home of the Calypso, the nymph from Homer’s Odyssey. According to the Homer, the Calypso held Odysseus captive for many years before eventually releasing him.

Who owns Malta?

During Malta’s long history it has been ruled by a number of powers who coveted its value as a strategic naval base. Those rulers included the Carthaginians, Phoenicians, Romans, Greeks, French, Arabs, Byzantines, Normans, Spanish, British and Sicilian Knights of St John. Today Malta is an independent republic.

Is Malta in the EU?

Malta joined the European Union in May 2004.

Does Malta use the euro?

Malta adopted the euro as its official currency in 2008, four years after joining the EU. Prior to adopting the euro, Malta’s currency was the Maltese Lira.

What was Malta’s currency in 2015?

The euro was the official currency in 2015, although the Maltese government has issued special currency and like other Eurozone countries it also has its own coins.

Euro coins issued by the Maltese government feature three distinctive images; an altar, the Maltese Cross and the country’s Coat of Arms.

Malta has a long-standing practice of minting gold and silver commemorative coins. They have continued this practice since adopting the euro. However the coins, which range in denominations ranging from 10 to 50 euros, are not legal tender in the Eurozone.

Other facts about Malta

Malta is considered to be an advanced economy. In the late 1700s and early 1800s, crops like cotton and tobacco along with shipping were the main drivers of the economy. The shipyards and providing support for British military soon replaced crops as the main industry on the islands.

With the development of longer-ranged ships, Malta’s power as a seaport diminished somewhat, however shipping remains somewhat important.

Tourism is a major sector of the economy. Malta is a prime exporter of limestone as well. The republic has experienced significant growth in a number of industries including financial services such as credit card issuing, banking licenses and fund administration as well as gaming and ship and aircraft registration.

The film industry is also a growing part of the country’s economy. The Maltese government works diligently to attract filmmakers and also provides significant incentives for those who identify Malta and its location by name in the film. This is part of the country’s efforts to increase tourism.

The TransferGo Blog regularly publishes articles designed to help our readers prepare for holidays including guides to events, restaurants and local currencies.

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