There were a total of 54,739 active business units in 2018, an increase of 9.1% over the previous year.
With roughly one active business for every 9 inhabitants, the National Statistics Office’s business demography report confirms that an overwhelming majority of these businesses – 51,867 – were micro-enterprises, employing 0 to 9 employees. Most of these were single-person operations: the NSO counted 17,132 employers in total, an increase of 9.8% over the previous year.
Most of the other active businesses (2,301) were classified as small businesses which employed fewer than 50 people. A further 479 were medium enterprises which employed up to 249 people, whilst the remaining 92 employed 250 workers or more.
During 2018, an increase in numbers was registered amongst all categories, with the number of large active businesses increasing by 13.6%, that of medium-size businesses by 5.3%, small businesses by 4.2% and micro-enterprises by 9.4%.
A total of 4,216 business units were registered in 2018, up from 3,116 in 2017, while the number of deregistrations reached 1,021, up from 985.
In 2018, 69.5% of active business units were sole proprietors and partnerships, while 28.3% were privately or publicly-quoted companies with limited liability for shareholders. The remaining 2.3% consisted of non-profits, cooperatives, corporations, branches and joint ventures.