28 AUGUST 2002

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Vassallo replies to land scheme criticism

Economic Services Parliamentary Secretary Edwin Vassallo yesterday replied to criticism over the newly launched scheme that would see land freed up for industrial use, confirming that no arable land is included among the sites involved in the scheme.

He also explained that the Malta Environment and Planning Authority has ensured that consultation with land owners is on the agenda and that the setting up of industrial parks, as envisaged by the scheme, would harm farmers or residents in the vicinity of earmarked sites.

In a statement issued yesterday, Mr Vassallo explained that the sites identified by MEPA are either in the vicinity of existing industrial activity or are sites that already have industrial activity that is of itself creating a negative impact in the immediate vicinity.

Following the consultation process the government will impose conditions to encourage comprehensive development, which will be aimed at phasing out wanton developments such as Tal-Handaq and Mriehel.

Although such parks are aimed at light industries and artisan crafts they will also hold warehousing facilities and parking areas for industrial vehicles and Mr Vassallo suggests interested parties look at the Mosta Technopark for a general idea of the type of development in question.

This scheme should guarantee the placing of some 2,200 units, of approximately one hundred square metres each, on the market and is expected to provide a solution to the long-standing problem of space availability for the self-employed and small businesses.

Related articles:
Interview with Edwin Vassallo



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