Summertime is a funny period.
It's funny because people tend to take a more relaxed approach to life, where they try to enjoy things that usually do not have the time to do. Here in Malta, they are a marvellous 100 days full to the brim with sun, sea, beaches, life, fun and events ranging from open air concerts to village feasts. Usually everyone takes part of summer events, independently of whether they are young or old.
Summer is also an opportunity to spend more quality time with family and, in particular, kids. While during winter children have to attend to school, Muzew (Catholic teaching) and all sort of events and activities, in summer there is so much more time. When I was a kid myself, I used to love summer and spend it practically swimming in the sea. Now, I like summer for totally different reasons and enjoying more quality time with my daughter is certainly the number one advantage.
Yet there are who list of categories of workers for who summer for them represents more work and commitments, particularly for people involved with public order. I thank them for their commitment and verve.
This week was the week dedicated to St Mary. Ferragosto – as the Italians describe it – heralds a period of mass holiday-going. I hope everyone is spent or is spending good days with their loved ones.
Restoration of the Statue of the Assumption of Our Lady in Ħal Għaxaq complete
Malta, as we know, holds a strong devotion for St Mary. There are no less than seven villages which celebrate the feast of St Mary on the 15th August or in the week of the 15th August.
This week, on the occasion of the feasts of St Mary, we inaugurated the full restoration of the Statue of the Assumption of Our Lady in Hal Ghaxaq. The inauguration was met with jubilation by the people of Hal Ghaxaq, particularly those devoted to Our Lady.
The work was done by the Restoration Directorate and this restoration work enhanced greatly the beauty of the main village square of Ħal Għaxaq.
I believe that thanks to this work, we are ensuring the preservation and longevity of significant monuments found in our distinct localities. This statue of Our Lady is over 100 years old and carries a cultural and traditional significance which is at heart of the local community, as well as around Malta and Gozo.
As attested by one of the marble inscriptions present on the statue’s pedestal, this statue pre-dates the year 1901. Works on site were taken in hand in mid-June.
The initial phase of the works on-site involved the careful removal of the existing, heavily damaged paint layers. These works revealed underlying, older lime based renders, the nature of which suggested that they belonged to the original colour treatment given to the statue. This original colour scheme and rendering typology was re-adopted during the restoration works.
I thank wholeheartedly the Restoration Direction for the amazing work done. We will keep delivering more and more.
This week we also unveiled a project which the Department of the Courts of Justice, in partnership with the Registrar of Companies, done through EU funding. In fact they both succeeded in acquiring an EU grant to develop an integrated National Insolvency Register that will in future be interconnected to the European e-Justice Portal. The project was co-funded by the Justice Programme (2014-2020) of the European Union.
MITA was appointed by the Department of the Court of Justice to develop an Insolvency Register that stems from the EU Insolvency Regulation 2015/848. The regulation states that “Member States shall establish and maintain in their territory one or several registers in which information concerning insolvency proceedings is published (‘insolvency registers’). That information shall be published as soon as possible after the opening of such proceedings.”
This register interfaces with two different insolvency registers. One of the insolvency registers is maintained by the Registrar of Companies, who receives information from companies registered in Malta which, upon their dissolution, are in an insolvent situation, as declared by their directors. The other register is kept by the Courts Registrar through information received whenever an application is filed at the Civil Courts by sole traders declaring bankruptcy. Separate registries are necessary in view of the fact that sole traders are not registered in the Company Insolvency Register. The court also holds information in the cases of companies which are in the course of a dissolution and winding up by the court.
This electronic register aims to provide information to the public about entities and traders that are facing insolvency and provides information that is relevant to creditors such as the case reference, date registered, court name, termination date, type of proceedings, article, insolvency practitioner, time limit for lodging a claim, court of appeal and time limit for appeal.
The insolvency register is accessible to the public at the eCourts website: https://ecourts.gov.mt/onlineservices/
It is simple and easy to use, and one can search either by the name of the debtor, by company number or identity card number and view the details of the insolvency proceedings related to the debtor. The design of the register is set to be responsive to allow viewing of the register from one’s mobile phone apart from desktop computers.
Initial feedback shows that this register was very well received.
Again, we will keep delivering more and more.