VAT rates in Malta

Quick overview

Standard Rate Other Rates
18% 7% and 5%

The local name for VAT in Malta is It-taxxa fuq il-valur mizjud

Recently, Malta published some changes for COVID-19 vaccines and in vitro diagnostic devices.  Further, a reduced rate is applied on protective face masks.  For more information about (recent) rate change developments in Malta, please click here.

Standard rate: 18%

This is in place since 1 January 2004.  Before that, the standard rate was 15%. This rate applies for all transactions that take place in Malta, unless an exception applies (such as a reduced rate, the zero rate or an exemption, or a reason to treat the transaction as outside scope of VAT).

Zero rate (0%)

Malta applies various exemptions with a refund of tax paid at preceding stages (zero rates), such as intra-Community and international transport, intra-Community supplies of goods, exports of goods (and related services) to non-EU countries, sea vessels and aircraft and related goods/services, and services to goods and goods under customs control.

Some EU countries apply a zero rate to consumption in the legislation of the Member States (Title VIII, Chapter 4 of the VAT directive 2006/112/EC).  For Malta, this concerns:

  • Supplies of food products for human consumption, except for supplies of pre-cooked dishes and certain highly processed products, such as ice-cream, chocolates, manufactured beverages or beverages subject to excise duty, and pet foods
  • Supplies of seeds or other means of propagation of plants classified under the above item
  • Supplies of live animals of a type generally used as, or yielding or producing, food for human consumption
  • Supplies of pharmaceuticals, medicines only where prescribed.

Reduced rate 1: 7%

Examples of transactions subject to this rate are:

  • Hotel accommodation
  • Use of sporting facilities

Reduced rate 2: 5%

Examples of transactions subject to this rate are:

  • Some confectionery and similar items.
  • Certain medical equipment for disabled persons
  • Books (including e-books)
  • Books on other physical means of support
  • Newspapers (including electronic newspapers)
  • Periodicals (including periodicals provided electronically apart from items under specific CN codes)
  • Admission to cultural services (shows, cinema, theatre), except admission to cinema
  • Supply of bicycles (Bicycles with an electric motor are exempted from VAT. Persons acquiring bicycles or pedelec bicycles receive a full VAT refund. Bicycle rentals are taxed at 7%)
  • Shoes and leather goods
  • Clothing and household linen

For a description of how the VAT rates are structured in the European Union, please see here.  The European Commission has also made an EU VAT rate database available where you can find the applicable VAT rate by entering the CN/CPA code of the goods respectively services (you can find more information here).

A global VAT/GST rate overview can be found here (note this is a work in progress).

This post was last updated on 8 April 2021.



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