In October 2022, the National Statistics Office launched a new dedicated survey on skills in Malta – the Malta Skills Survey (MSS). A first of its kind, the objective of this nation-wide survey was to bring forth the array of skills among the population of working age of Malta and Gozo. Skills profiling of the available workforce is fundamental to identify any skills gap and/or skills mismatch, thereby making it possible for better training and re-training programmes.
Furthermore, results obtained from the MSS will also assist policy makers and researchers to better understand what business interests can be brought to the Island’s shore, knowing well what the workforce has to offer.
For the purpose of this survey, 130,000 individuals aged between 15 and 64 years, living in private households, were sampled. When selecting the sample, the NSO ensured a proper representation of the population by sex, age group, region, citizenship (National and Non-national) and labour status. The sample included Maltese citizens residing in Malta, non-Maltese citizens were only included if they had lived in Malta for at least five years prior to the survey.
1. Skills covered within the survey were grouped into eight broad categories. The most common skills categories, meaning the categories where at least one skill was identified by the target population, were computing (78.5 per cent), communication and collaboration (70.6 per cent) and assistance and care (65.6 per cent).
2. Within the category of artistic and creative skills, sports was the most common skill among the youngest segment of the population (15 to 24 years), whereas culinary abilities were the most common among those aged over 25 years.
3. Skills within the category of construction and related skills were most common among the older section of the male population.
4. Skills within the agriculture, fishing and related skills category were more common in Gozo, with the proportion reporting at least one skill being higher than that for the total overall population.
5. Almost half of all males in the target population identified at least one skill in the tools, machinery and related skills category. The share for females was much lower (15.4 per cent).
6. Almost 75 per cent of all females selected at least one assistance, care and related skill. The share was much lower for males at 58.4 per cent.
7. Within the category of communication and collaboration, problem solving was the most common skill among those between the age of 15 and 24 years (37.7 per cent).
8. The most common information and related skill within the population was gathering information from physical or electronic sources (24.6 per cent).
9. Over three fourths of the total target population reported having basic computer skills (76.8 per cent).
Salient Points – Languages
10. The most common languages understood by the target population were English (96.0 per cent), followed by Maltese (90.4 percent) and Italian (62.0 per cent).
11. Knowledge of the Italian and Arabic languages was more common among persons aged 25 years and over, while knowledge of the French and German languages was prevalent among the 15 to 24 age group.
12. The share of the population reporting advanced reading and writing skills in Maltese was much lower when compared to listening and speaking ability.
13. An advanced level of proficiency in both Maltese and English was more common among females when compared to males in all four language areas.
14. Younger persons were more likely to report an advanced level of knowledge in one of the four language areas when compared to their older aged counterparts.