Tax rebates and cost-of-living cheques are in the mail, Finance Minister Clyde Caruana said on Monday.

Addressing a press conference in ┼╗abbar, Caruana said the government had committed itself to disbursing this money “in advance” together with the additional cost-of-living cheque.

Caruana said the additional cheque, ranging from €100 to €200, were being sent out to help people during these challenging times.

In previous years, tax rebate cheques have been distributed as follows: 

  • September 2018
  • April 2019 (prior to the European Parliament elections)
  • June 2020
  • September 2021 

Questioned about the earlier than usual timing of this year’s tax rebate, Caruana said the €70 million cheques rebate measure was announced by himself and the prime minister around eight weeks ago. 

The announcement was made on February 3, 17 days before Robert Abela called the March 26 election.

On accusations that the timing was indicative of a vote-buying exercise, Caruana said this would not necessarily be the only aid given out by the government.

“I do not exclude that, later this year, we will also have another opportunity to help people to make up for an increase in prices.

"This government is committed to safeguarding the livelihoods of people, as well as their purchasing power," the finance minister said.

He said the government is committed to helping people, particularly given the challenges brought about by the situation in Ukraine. 

Workers and students will receive cheques worth €100, while pensioners and people on social benefits will receive up to €200. This is over and above the tax refunds ranging from €60 to €145 that were previously announced in the budget. 

The government’s total outlay in the form of cash cheques and tax refunds will be €70 million and it will benefit 380,000 people.

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