The Joint Project on “Supporting Malta in the design and implementation of a new National Anti-Trafficking Strategy”, which is implemented by the Council of Europe Anti-Trafficking Division in co-operation with the European Commission, was launched officially in a kick-off meeting held in Valletta, Malta, on 6 December 2022. The Project is co-funded by the European Union via the Technical Support Instrument (TSI).
In an opening address, Rebecca Buttigieg, Parliamentary Secretary for Reforms and Equality of the Ministry for Home Affairs, Security, Reform and Equality (MHSR), affirmed the commitment of Malta to combating trafficking in human beings, including through the new Project aimed at drawing up an effective reform strategy that adopts a human rights-based, gender-sensitive and cross-sectoral approach. On behalf of the European Commission, Adamantia Manta, Policy Officer in DG-REFORM, noted that the Project is fully aligned with the priorities of the European Union and will build on the EU Strategy on Trafficking in Human Beings (2021-2025). Petya Nestorova, Head of the Anti-Trafficking Division of the Council of Europe, underlined Malta’s commitment to strengthening action against human trafficking in the light of the recommendations made by the Group of Experts on Action against Trafficking in Human Beings (GRETA) in its third report on Malta
This important first event was an opportunity to gather representatives of the Office of the Prime Minister, as well as of all relevant ministries, law enforcement, the judiciary, civil society organisations, trade unions, the private sector, academia and other international organisations. The purpose of the Project, which will run for two years, is to support the Maltese authorities, and in particular the Human Rights Directorate under MHSR, with the preparation of the new national anti-trafficking strategy and action plan. Co-operation among all stakeholders will be at the heart of this project.