Malta is an archipelago in the Mediterranean Sea, located south of Italy. The country is a member of the European Union and has a highly developed financial services industry. In this article, we will explore the banking system in Malta, including the main local banks, the presence of UK and USA banks, accounts and services offered to expats, bank opening hours, and how to open a bank account as an expat.
Main local banks in Malta
The main local banks in Malta are:
- Bank of Valletta (BOV)
- HSBC Bank Malta
- Lombard Bank Malta
- APS Bank
- MeDirect Bank (Malta)
- BNF Bank
- IIG Bank (Malta) Ltd.
Major UK and USA banks in Malta
UK and USA banks also have a presence in Malta, including:
- Barclays Bank PLC
- Lloyds Bank International Limited
- Citibank NA
- FCM Bank Limited
Accounts and services for expats
Banks in Malta offer a range of accounts and services specifically aimed at expats, including:
- Non-resident accounts: These accounts are available for individuals who are not resident in Malta but require a local account to receive payments or manage expenses in Malta.
- Foreign currency accounts: Banks offer accounts in a range of currencies, which can be useful for expats who have income in a different currency than the local currency (Euro).
- International money transfers: Banks in Malta offer international money transfer services that can be useful for expats who need to send money to their home country or other countries.
- Mortgage loans: Some banks offer mortgage loans to non-residents who wish to buy property in Malta.
Typical bank opening hours in Malta
Banking hours in Malta are generally from 8:30 am to 1:30 pm from Monday to Friday. Some banks also offer extended hours, with some branches open until 4:00 pm or 5:00 pm.
Areas of concern for expats
While the banking system in Malta is generally safe and reliable, there have been some concerns in recent years about money laundering and other financial crimes. Expats should be aware of the risks associated with these issues and ensure they are working with reputable banks and financial institutions.
Opening a bank account
To open a bank account in Malta as an expat, follow these steps:
Step 1: Choose a bank
Research the banks in Malta and choose one that suits your needs. Consider factors such as fees, account features, and customer service.
Step 2: Gather your documents
To open a bank account, you will need to provide the following documents:
- Valid passport or ID card
- Proof of address (e.g. utility bill or rental agreement)
- Proof of income (e.g. pay slips or bank statements)
It is advisable to check with your chosen bank to confirm which documents they require.
Step 3: Visit the bank
Visit the branch of your chosen bank in person and inform them that you wish to open an account. Bring all the required documents with you.
Step 4: Complete the application
The bank will provide you with an application form to complete. Provide all the necessary information and sign the form.
Step 5: Wait for approval
The bank will review your application and documents. If approved, you will be notified, and your account will be opened. You will receive your account details, including your account number and any necessary login information.
In conclusion, banking in Malta is generally safe and reliable, with a range of options available for expats. By following the steps outlined above, expats can open a bank account and enjoy the benefits of the banking system in Malta.