Watch: EU to take legal action against Malta over ‘golden passport’ scheme

Tista' taqra bil- Malti.

The European Union will begin infringement procedures against Malta and Cyprus over their controversial ‘golden passport scheme’.

This was announced by the Commission’s Vice President Maroš Šefčovičmeta who said that infringement procedures would be launched against the two countries on Tuesday.

Last week Cyprus announced that it would scrap the programme following an undercover TV investigation which exposed abuses.

The Commission’s Vice President noted that the Commission had frequently raised its concerns with Malta and Cyprus, adding that the latest developments only reaffirmed those concerns. He said that the Commission will continue with its intensive contacts with both member states to ensure that European law in this area would be properly respected.

Critics have frequently said that the schemes have been exploited by criminals who bought a passport which gave them a gateway to the bloc.

In an interview with, European Commissioner Vera Jourova had revealed that the Commission was working on a plan to regulate the schemes used in Malta and Cyprus.

Disgraced former OPM Chief of Staff Keith Schembri is currently being investigated in connection to alleged kickbacks from the scheme.