The Maltese Ministry of Education and Employment has volunteered to participate as a case study in a Cedefop country review on apprenticeships. The review focuses on policies to improve apprenticeship schemes in Malta, identifies strengths and challenges of these policies, and presents recommendations to ensure quality apprenticeships. The other country participating in the initial phase of this review is Lithuania.

Over the past 10 years, Malta has invested in vocational education and training (VET) both in types of training and qualifications offered as well as in infrastructure, which resulted in a considerable increase in VET students. Today, Malta has 11 VET institutes catering for training in different sectors which fall under the umbrella of the Malta College of Arts, Science and Technology. In addition, the Institute of Tourism Studies caters for the hospitality industry. These State VET providers respond to Malta’s labour market needs.

However, numbers of apprenticeships have not reflected this trend in VET growth. On the contrary, apprenticeships are decreasing.

Total number of apprenticeships by end December from 2010 to 2013
Data provided by the Employment and Training Corporation


This country review is targeted to serve the needs expressed by the Ministry of Education and Employment in Malta, but will also expand the evidence-base on apprenticeships across Europe. It will also provide insights on contextual factors determining success or failure of apprenticeship initiatives. The exercise will support policy- and decision-makers at different levels so that quality apprenticeship programmes can be run successfully.

The exercise brings together key stakeholders from VET institutions, employers’ associations, trade unions, as well as students who will all follow and validate the research as it proceeds and develops.

A first background paper describing the current state of apprenticeship in Malta was drawn up and discussed by the steering committee in August 2014 and will be validated by a larger group of stakeholders later in 2014. The background paper will help stakeholders to decide which questions to ask in the second phase, which will comprise in-depth interviews with many stakeholders involved in apprenticeships.

Malta hopes that this exercise will help to reform its current apprenticeship schemes, combat youth unemployment and serve as an example of good practice for other European countries.

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