Registered businesses grew by 6,779 between 2018 and 2019, an increase of 5.8 percent, according to figures published by the National Statistics Office on Monday. There are now 123,649 companies on the business register. Deregistered businesses in 2019 rose to 5,719 – the highest figure in three years.
A third of new units are active in the sectors of wholesale and retail, motor repairs, and financial and insurance sectors which count just over 20,000 businesses between them.
Companies in professional, scientific, or technical categories make up another 12.7 percent of the total registered numbers. All business categories recorded an increase except for agriculture and fisheries which witnessed a 0.2 drop from 3,353 units in 2018 to 3,344 in 2019.
There was a six percent increase in micro businesses employing up to nine people during 2019, while small businesses employing between 10 and 59 workers grew by 11 percent. The former classification makes 97.3 percent of registered businesses in Malta while the latter accounts for 2.1 percent.
The total number of medium and large enterprises stood at 680 by the end of 2019, 0.4 percent of the total business population.
Sole ownerships and partnerships made the largest share of companies at 48.5 percent, an increase of 0.6 percent from the year before – explaining the decrease in limited liability companies and public limited companies which accounted for 47.7 percent of the global figure.