With regulations and bank checks becoming tighter in the last few years, opening a bank account in an EU country has changed but not very much. Both EU and non-EU nationals can open bank accounts in Malta.
Special terms exist only for people who have a certain amount of debt. They are required to be in Malta for a period of time before opening a bank account. If you don’t have high levels of debt, opening a bank account in Malta should be pretty straightforward.
It is always advisable to be introduced by a legal and accounting professional, however here’s a list to help you with the documents required to open a bank account.
- A Photo ID or Passport
- A Bank Reference: Either from your current bank or a previous one. (Always required for non-EU national)
- A Utility Bill showing you full residential address
- The Bank Account Application Form (which may vary depending on the bank of choice)
Your bank account history
The bank you are applying with for a new account will request your history in the form of statements, assets, debts etc. they will also conduct KYC (know your customer) checks the aim of which is to detect persons at high risk of using the account for money laundering and similar unlawful practices.
How long does it take to open a bank account in Malta?
Spending on the bank and the detail required in your specific case, this process may take up to six months, however typically it takes a fraction of that time.
Malta's banking system offers all the banking services you would expect, such as online and telephone banking, credit and debit cards and a variety of accounts such as savings, current and deposit.
The banking system is largely similar to the UK system here, although the banks are now under tighter regulation and are not quick to lend. Individuals are fully investigated as well as your company's financial record first if you own shares or are the director of a company.
A Maltese Residence Card helps speed up the banking processes
Getting a Maltese Residence Card will speed up the process of opening a bank account in Malta. If interested, here at Integritas we can assist you in obtaining a Maltese Residence Card.
If you are not present in Malta your best option is to open an international bank account. Intended for expats, this type of account is best suited for those who are on the move or travelling frequently. International bank accounts usually have a minimum balance limit and penalty fees are incurred if your funds fall below the minimum amount required.