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Non-Maltese citizens are required to obtain an employment licence, or work permit, before working in Malta. This is stipulated in the Immigration Act (Cap 217) which regulates entry and permanence in Malta of non-Maltese citizens.

The grant of such licences is managed by the Employment Licences Unit of Jobsplus in Malta (ETC).

More information can be found here​


Things to know
  • The application for an employment licence is made by the employer on the applicant’s behalf
  • The TCN applicant is able to accept any private sector or public sector employment
  • Applying for an employment licence is subject to labour market conditions i.e. licences are only granted when EEA/Swiss nationals cannot be identified for the position in question
  • Employment Licences are non-transferable. Thus applicants cannot use the licence to take up a different job or to work for a different employer
  • Employment Licences are valid for a maximum duration of one year
  • TCNs may only work on a full-time basis or on a part-time basis if the wage is at least twice the minimum wage throughout the validity of the employment licence. There are no restrictions on the type of work undertaken by Long Term Residents or by recognized Refugees and persons with Temporary Humanitarian Protection or Subsidiary Protection.         

Who needs an employment licence?


The following individuals are exempt from obtaining an Employment Licence in order to work in Malta:

  •  A citizen from EEA/Switzerland (with the exception of Croatian nationals who are still subject to transitional arrangements)

  • A family member of an EEA/Swiss National. This may be the spouse, the direct descendants who are under the age of 21 or are dependents, and those of the spouse, or the dependent direct relatives in the ascending line and those of the spouse

  • A dependant or a member of the household of a Union citizen having the primary right of residence, or a person who for serious health reasons strictly requires personal care by the Union citizen, or a partner with whom the Union Citizen has a durable relationship unless such relationship is in conflict with the public policy of Malta

  • You are a posted worker, approved by the Department for Industrial and Employment Relations. 

HOW TO Find a Job?


TCNs may search for Job Opportunities through private employment agencies, the internet or through adverts placed in national newspapers. A list of private employment agencies can be found here​.

TCNs are not eligible to register for employment through the public employment agency managed by Jobsplus (ETC). Only Long-term residents are eligible to register for employment through the public employment agency (ETC) (NOTE: Refugees are also allowed to register for work). Once a person registers for employment, s/he is assigned an employment advisor and together draw a personal action plan. Clients can be submitted to vacancies available and also one can apply for a course enhances the skills to become more employable. 

TCNs can visit the Jobsplus Centres and Jobsplus Website to obtain details regarding vacanciesCV templates are also given to guide TCNs to compile their own CVs.


What are labour market considerations?


All Third Country Nationals, except those with long term residence status and family members of long term residents from the thirteenth month after reunification, must go through labour market considerations. This means that licences are only granted when EEA/Swiss nationals cannot be identified for the position in question. Other considerations include:

  • National situation in respect of surpluses or shortages in the given occupation or sector
  • Employer's history and situation in terms inter alia of recruitment and redundancy patterns
  • Business investments
  • Contractual commitments
  • Skill level, relevant experience and overall suitability for the position

There are also sectoral/occupational considerations to be taken into consi​deration.


What if i am a Student?

Students holding a residence permit issued under Legal Notice 29 of 2008 are entitled to take up employment, for a maximum period of ten hours each week as long as in possession of an Employment Licence. Students are not granted licences to take up self-employment. Applications for employment licences for students are received from the employer seeking to recruit the student.
  • ​​Students who are still in their first year of residence in Malta or who do not have a copy of a student’s residence permit issued by the Department of Citizenship and Expatriate Affairs may not apply for an Employment Licence.​​

  • ​Students in Malta studying English may not apply for an Employment Licence.
The expiry date of the Employment Licence will correspond to the date of commencement of the following academic year. For the purpose of these guidelines “completion of studies” will be taken to mean the date when Faculties/Institutes/Centres work out final classifications following issue of resit results. Applications from employers in respect of students who have not left Malta for at least three consecutive months following completion of their studies will not be accepted, except where required by public policy and in the case of graduates (ISCED 5 and higher).

Last updated in June 2014.

How to find a job? Last updated in August 2016.

Requirements, Fees and Application Process

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 Contact Name
Employment Licences Unit
Head Office
Ħal Far Road
Ħal Far BBG 3000

+356 2165 4940