Malta on secure road to EU membership after Nationalist Party wins second term

Maltese voters gave the Nationalist Party, which
had put the island state on course to joining the EU, a second
term in general elections on 13 April.

Prime Minister Eddie Fenech-Adami was able to capitalise on
the momentum created by the EU-referendum staged in March,
in which Maltese voters had come out in support of joining
the Union (see
EURACTIV 10 March
2003

). The prime minister called for early parliamentary
elections and built his campaign around support for
EU-accession. This strategy seemingly paid off, with his
party garnering 51.7 per cent of the vote, ahead of the
opposition Labour Party, which claimed 47.6 per cent. The
Labour Party had campaigned on a ticket that advocated only
a loose association with, not full membership in the EU.

Although the parliament composition
remains unchanged, the outcome gives Mr. Fenech-Adami the
right to sign off on the accession treaty at a formal EU
meeting in Athens, Greece on 16 April.

 

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