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Access To Employment Scheme – Removing Barriers To Employment

Objective of the Scheme

ETC’s Access to Employment (A2E) Scheme provides employment aid to enterprises in Malta and Gozo to promote the recruitment of disadvantaged, severely disadvantaged, disabled jobseekers and inactive persons.

Aid intensity

Employers who provide employment opportunities to those who are disadvantaged will receive a subsidy of €85 per week per new recruit as explained below. This subsidy goes up to €125 per week for a maximum of 156 weeks in the case of registered disabled persons.


The following criteria must be satisfied by undertakings to be considered as eligible for the scheme:

– Must present a fully completed application form together with all the requested supporting documentation;

– The Undertaking must submit the written application prior to engaging the new recruit;

– The recruitment must represent a net increase in the undertaking’s staff as at receipt date of the A2E application form. This increase must be compared to the average employees employed with the undertaking in the twelve months preceding the application receipt date;

– Shareholders and directors of the Undertaking will not be eligible to benefit from the A2E if they take up employment. The following is a list of target groups which will be eligible for the scheme, together with an explanation of the duration of assistance in each group category:

(1) Full-time employment

Eligible costs under the A2E scheme will be paid for the periods indicated for each of the above target groups to cover part of the basic wage cost of those Undertakings engaging disadvantaged, severely disadvantaged persons or persons with disability.

– In relation to the employment of a disadvantaged or a severely disadvantaged person, Employers will receive a flat rate of €85 per week  for a full-time 40-hour week.
–  In relation to the employment of a person with disability, Employers will receive a flat rate of €125 per week

(2) Increased to full-time employment

A participant recruit under Target Groups 3 and 8 who is in part-time employment can still be eligible for subsidy:  if the recruit is in part-time employment, the A2E scheme will enable the individual to increase his/her weekly working hours to full-time. If the applicant Undertaking is the same one providing the part-time employment, the grant will be a flat sum of €42.50 per week (for disadvantaged or severely disadvantaged persons) while €62.50 per week (for registered disabled person) for a term as indicated above.

(3) Part-time employment

In case of part-time employment, the grant will be pro-rated either to 20, 25 or 30 hours per week. The Undertaking will need to provide only a declaration signed by both the employer and the employee confirming the employment, and confirming that wages were paid in line with National Legislation.

If the applicant Undertaking is different from that of the part-time employment, the new Undertaking will be eligible for the whole €85 per week (for disadvantaged or severely disadvantaged persons) while €125 per week (for registered disabled person) for a term as indicated above.

(4) Others

– New participating recruits will be eligible as long as the applicant Undertaking is different from an employer who previously employed the prospective new recruits within the previous 12 months;

– Persons reaching pensionable age before the end of the Grant Agreement period will not be eligible.


– Apprentices participating in subsidised Apprenticeship Schemes may participate in the Access to Employment Programme with an undertaking other than the same Undertaking who provided their apprenticeship.

– Apprentices remaining unemployed for a period of twelve months after the end of their apprenticeship contract will become eligible to participate with the same undertaking who provided the apprenticeship.

– Registered Disabled Persons who are recognised as ‘worker with disabilities’ under national law and participating in subsidised Apprenticeship Schemes may participate in the A2E Programme with the same Undertaking who provided their apprenticeship. 

Employment Retention

Employment Retention of the new participating recruits. For ALL target groups, the Undertaking must retain in employment the recruited person for a further period (as per table below) following the subsidised period.

An undertaking in difficulty

The ETC will be checking that every applicant Undertaking is financially sound. Any one of the following circumstances would render it ‘an undertaking in difficulty’ ineligible for funding:

– In the case of limited liability companies (with a few exceptions relating to SMEs), if more than half of the subscribed share capital has been absorbed by losses.
– In the case of companies with partners’ partial limited liability, as in (a) above.
– Involvement in any collective insolvency proceedings, where any rescue aid has not been repaid.

Monitoring Structures

The Undertaking has the responsibility of ensuring effective monitoring of the subsidised employment. It is up to the undertaking to choose the most appropriate tool to ensure effective and timely monitoring. Unannounced physical on-the-spot check by the ETC may be carried out. Documentary checks may also be carried out and the ETC will inform the undertaking at least one working day in advance.

ETC will be conducting two types of checks:

– All Undertakings will be verified to ensure that the employment of the new recruit under the A2E Scheme has been effected; this will be confirmed through a countersigned declaration stating that the employee was being paid at least the minimum wage accordingly to law.

– On a sample basis the Undertakings will be verified through more in-depth checks; not only verification of documents but also traceability of payments. At this point further documents may be requested to the Undertakings in order for ETC to conduct these checks.


Applications can be sent at any time during the 2014-2020 funding period subsequent to 1st June 2015.

Contact Us

For further information on this scheme, please contact us on:

E: [email protected]  or

M: 00356 77650000  or

T: 00356 21654567

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