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|13th Prime Minister of Malta|
11 March 2013
Marie Louise Coleiro Preca
|Preceded by||Lawrence Gonzi|
|13th Chairperson-in-office of the Commonwealth of Nations|
27 November 2015
|Preceded by||Maithripala Sirisena|
22 January 1974 |
|Political party||Labour Party|
|Alma mater||University of Malta
University of Bristol
Joseph Muscat, KUOM (born 22 January 1974) is a Maltese politician who has been Prime Minister of Malta since 2013. Muscat has been leader of the Labour Party since 6 June 2008, and he was Leader of the Opposition from 1 October 2008 to 10 March 2013. Previously he was a Member of the European Parliament from 2004 to 2008.
Muscat received his secondary education at St Aloysius' College, Malta. He received his tertiary education at the University of Malta and the University of Bristol. He graduated Bachelor of Commerce in Management and Public Policy (University of Malta, 1995), Bachelor of Arts with Honours in Public Policy (University of Malta, 1996), Master of Arts in European Studies (University of Malta, 1997) and Ph.D. in Management Research (University of Bristol, 2007) with a thesis on Fordism, multinationals and SMEs in Malta.
Muscat worked as a journalist with the party's radio station, Super One Radio. He later took on a similar role at Super One Television, becoming the station's assistant head of news in 1996. He was also editor of the party's online newspaper, maltastar.com between 2001 and 2004. Muscat wrote a regular column in L-Orizzont, a Maltese-language newspaper published by the General Workers'Union and its sister Sunday weekly It-Torca, and was a regular contributor to The Times, an independent newspaper published in Malta.
Muscat was as a member of the youth section of the Labour Party, the Labour Youth Forum (Forum Żgħażagħ Laburisti) where he served as Financial Secretary (1994–97) and Acting Chairperson (1997). He later served as Education Secretary in the Central Administration of the Party (2001–2003) and Chairman of its Annual General Conference (November 2003). During the Labour government of 1996-98 he was a member of the National Commission for Fiscal Morality (1997–98).
In 2003 he was nominated to a working group led by George William Vella and Evarist Bartolo on the Labour Party's policies on the European Union. This working group produced the document Il-Partit Laburista u l-Unjoni Ewropea: Għall-Ġid tal-Maltin u l-Għawdxin ('Labour Party and the European Union: For the benefit of the Maltese and the Gozitans') which was adopted by the Labour Party Extraordinary General Conference in November of that year. At this General Conference Muscat was approved as a candidate for the election to the European Parliament.
Member of the European Parliament (2004-2008)
Despite having previously expressed opposition to Malta's entry into the European Union, Muscat was elected to the European Parliament in the 2004 European Parliament election being the Labour Party (formerly the Malta Labour Party) candidate who received the most first-preference votes. Sitting as a Member of the European Parliament, with the Party of European Socialists, he held the post of Vice-President of the Parliament's Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs and substitute member of the Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection. He was a member of a number of delegations for relations with Belarus and with the countries of south-east Europe.He was also a member of the EU-Armenia, EU-Azerbaijan and EU-Georgia Parliamentary Cooperation Committees.
As an MEP he supported a reduction in the tax for satellite television, the right for customers to watch sport events for free, and a number of issues related to environmental protection in Malta. He formed part of a team responsible for a report on the roaming mobile phone bills and sale of banks.
Muscat resigned his seat in the European Parliament in 2008 to take up a seat in the Maltese Parliament and the role of Leader of the Opposition. Four months previously, he had been elected Leader of the Labour Party. Before his resignation his report proposing new regulations for the EU’s financial services sector was adopted by the European Parliament.
Leader of Labour Party
On 24 March 2008 Muscat announced his candidacy for the post of Party Leader, to replace Alfred Sant, who had resigned after a third consecutive defeat for the Party in the March 2008 general election and a heavy defeat in the EU referendum in March 2003.
Although at the time Muscat was not a member of the Maltese House of Representatives, he was elected as the new party leader on 6 June 2008. In order to take up the post of Leader of the Opposition, Muscat was coopted in the Maltese Parliament on 1 October 2008 to fill the seat vacated by Joseph Cuschieri for the purpose.The latter eventually took up the sixth seat allocated to Malta in the European Parliament once the Treaty of Lisbon was brought into effect in 2011. On taking up the Leadership post Muscat introduced a number of changes to the Party, notably the change of official name and party emblem.
In the 2009 Maltese European Parliament Elections, the first with Muscat as Party Leader, Labour candidates obtained 55% of first-preferences against the 40% obtained by candidates of the Nationalist Party.
Muscat contested Malta's general elections for the first time in March 2013 and was elected in District 2 - Il-Birgu, L-Isla, Il-Bormla, Ħaż-Żabbar, Il-Kalkara, Ix-Xgħajra at the first count with 13968 votes and District 4 - Part of Il-Fgura, Il-Gudja, Ħal Għaxaq, Part of Il-Marsa, Paola, Santa Luċija, Ħal Tarxien at the first count with 12202 votes and 53% of the vote. On 11 March 2013 he was sworn in as Prime Minister of Malta.
In 2016, two of Muscat's people were uncovered in the Panama Papers. These were Konrad Mizzi, a minister, and Keith Schembri, the Prime Minister's Chief of Staff. Despite protest from the Opposition, national protests and two no confidence motions, Muscat did not remove these people from government positions.
In 2017, independent journalist and blogger Daphne Caruana Galizia alleged that Muscat's wife held the third company in Panama, while Opposition Leader Simon Busuttil revealed that he had information that Muscat's Chief of Staff, and possibly Muscat himself were receiving kick-backs from passport sales. This led to national protests and the formation of the coalition between the Nationalist Party, and the newly-formed Democratic Party, known as Forza Nazzjonali (National Force).
On April 7, 2014, Muscat suffered from temporary blindness caused by UV radiation probably related to burns to his cornea. Like 60 other people with similar symptoms, he had participated at a political rally the day before.
- Malta : Companion of Honour of the National Order of Merit (2013) by right as a Prime Minister of Malta
- "Joseph Muscat crowned Labour leader". timesofmalta.com. 2008-06-08. Retrieved 2015-11-26.
- "Joseph Muscat sworn in, goes to Castille, as huge crowd celebrates". timesofmalta.com. 2013-03-11. Retrieved 2015-11-26.
- A living legacy Nonesuch, Autumn 2014)
- Malta Voters Narrowly Approve Joining European Union, New York Times, March 10, 2003
- "Maħfra u ġustizzja". Department of Information, Malta. 23 December 2008. Archived from the original on 6 December 2016.
- "General Elections 2013 - District 4". gov.mt.
- "European Commission - PRESS RELEASES - Press release - President Barroso congratulates Dr Joseph Muscat following electoral victory in Malta". europa.eu.
- Miriam Dalli, "Minister, parliamentary secretaries return to work", Malta Today, 8 April 2014.
- "Past Recipients of Maltese Honours and Awards and Date of Conferment" (PDF). Office of the Prime Minister, Malta.
- Honorary awards
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Joseph Muscat.|
|Party political offices|
|Leader of the Labour Party
|Leader of the Opposition
|Prime Minister of Malta
|Chairperson of the Commonwealth of Nations