Key Employment Initiative

The Key Employee Initiative (KEI) provides a fast-tracked service to non-EU or EEA nationals who are employed in Malta. The programme was established to facilitate the issuing of work permits to prospective key employees within five working days from the date of submission of the application.

The programme is applicable to managerial or highly-technical posts which require the relevant qualifications or adequate experience related to the job being offered. Applicants must provide information to confirm the following eligibility criteria:

  • Annual gross salary of at least €30,000 per annum;
  • Certified copies of the relevant qualifications, warrants or the necessary work experience;
  • Declaration by the employer stating that the applicant has the necessary credentials to perform the duties being assigned.

The KEI is also extended to innovators involved in start-up projects that are specifically endorsed by Malta Enterprise – a government entity established for the promotion of business in Malta.

Applications for a single permit under the KEI may be submitted while the applicant is physically in Malta or still abroad. When the application is received, Identity Malta verifies that all documentation is present and that the fee of €280.50 has been paid. If such documentation is complete, the application is forwarded for processing.

Approved applicants will be issued with a residence permit that is valid for a period of one year. The said permit may be renewed for a maximum period of three years, subject to the presentation of (i) a valid definite or indefinite contract, and (ii) the original annual tax declaration form stamped by the Inland Revenue Department.


Documents Required when applicant is still abroad

  1. CEA Form C (Non-EU) – Application for a residence permit on the basis of employment. The form must be endorsed by the employer with an official stamp and signature of the responsible official;
  2. Full copy of passport, including the blank pages;
  3. Declaration by the employer stating that the applicant has the necessary credentials to perform the duties being assigned;
  4. Any supporting documentation such as contracts, evidence of relevant commercial activity and sites of work should be provided to substantiate the application;
  5. Draft work contract showing an annual gross salary of €30,000;
  6. Curriculum Vitae of the applicant;
  7. Position Description;
  8. Certified copies of the relevant qualifications and/or warrants;
  9. If the applicant is not suitably qualified in the post being applied for, at least three years of experience relating to the job are required. Reference letters must show the start and end dates and details of the work carried out. The letters should contain clear contact details of the referee including a valid email address, postal address and contact number;

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