The Mediterranean island of Malta has launched a new initiative to coordinate the way in which the island is promoted to the world.
Incorporating public and private organisations across the country, Malta is seeking to redefine its position as it seeks future inward investment, tourism revenue and international business talent.
The worldwide economic downturn means increasingly mobile global investors, businesses and job creators, with the power to make or break countries and destinations, are now considering a far broader range of locations.
The initiative – entitled Creating the Malta Story - is led by Michael Refalo, Malta’s former Minister for Tourism, Culture and the Arts and member of the UN World Tourism Organisation Strategic Committee.
This unique exercise, backed by 18 leading business, financial and tourism organisations, aims to create a compelling identity based on Malta’s unique characteristics.
London based destination specialists, The Communication Group, were appointed to undertake the initiative and have spent several months researching and evaluating the Malta story including interviews with Malta’s business, finance and tourism chiefs.
Mr Refalo said: “A unified, authentic identity for Malta will help us to stand out in an increasingly competitive market.
“The Malta Story capitalizes on our rich and diverse 7,000 year history, passionate, well educated people, internationally recognised centres of excellence and its position at the most southerly point of Europe.
“With this initiative, we are securing Malta’s place as a destination where people want to live, work, and invest.
“All participants are in agreement that Malta needs a collective message to promote itself in the future, to complement the Government of Malta’s vision for 2015 and further develop Malta’s competitive position in the world.”
The Communication Group research suggests intangible ‘soft’ factors - such as quality of life - have become more important in influencing business and tourism decisions.
These intangible assets are increasingly being effectively exploited by developing nations throughout the world and challenging the more traditional destinations.
Emma Johnson, head of the destination practice at The Communication Group, who has led the assignment added: “Malta has a unique combination of assets that can and should be harnessed to create emotional connections in the minds’ of both investors and tourists alike.
“For instance, it is a sophisticated, stable, well run island nation, it has established and successful institutions which punch above their weight and it has a quality of life that is hard to beat,” she concluded.