Summer time or winter time – which do you prefer?

In the coming days, Maltese and Gozitan citizens will have the opportunity to express their opinion on the EU Directive on daylight saving time. This year could be the last for this practice, as the European Commission is proposing that member states stick to the same time all year round.

This public consultation was launched by Minister for European Affairs and Equality Helena Dalli and Parliamentary Secretary for European Funds and Social Dialogue Aaron Farrugia, who announced the start of an online consultation process which will be concluded on Monday 1st October by means of a meeting with social partners, representatives of interested entities, and members of the general public.

Minister Helena Dalli explained that the European Commission’s proposal is based on a non-scientific survey which found that 54% of the Maltese public is opposed to the current practice of changing the time twice yearly and prefers to stick to the same time all year. She explained that the process by which the Commission’s proposal is approved does not require unanimity between member states. It does, however, require the Maltese Government to establish its position in the European Council, and this position should reflect public opinion. For this reason, the public is invited to participate in this consultative process.

Speaking at the conference, Parliamentary Secretary for European Funds and Social Dialogue Aaron Farrugia stressed the importance of consulting with social partners, representatives of interested entities and the public in general, particularly as the proposal in question affects them directly. Farrugia explained that since the issue impinges on various sectors such as trade, energy, health, and farming, the proposal will impact many people. For this reason, he said that it is important for the government’s position to reflect public opinion. To this end, the Ministry for European Affairs and Equality is also undertaking a scientific study on the subject matter.

Head of the EU Secretariat Glenn Micallef explained that the online consultation will consist of four simple and direct questions which should provide a clear picture of what Maltese and Gozitan citizens think on the matter.

Source: Government of Malta