Edward Scicluna, arguably one of Malta’s highest-paid public sector officials, who has a €138,000 package as head of the Central Bank, will be getting another €12,000 as a member of the board of the financial services watchdog – the MFSA.
Scicluna, 74, resigned as Finance Minister in November 2020 and was soon after appointed as Governor of the Central Bank of Malta. He first became an MP in 2013, having previously served as a Member of the European Parliament.
The former finance minister made headlines last month after it emerged that he had recently bumped up the salary of CBM governor by €11,000 “a few months before he took on the role.”
It was recently reported that, when Scicluna appointed Mario Vella as CBM Governor in 2016, he had told him that his salary would be €89,000 for his five-year term. But at the beginning of last year, Scicluna informed Vella that his salary was being revised upwards to €100,000.
Then, in reply to a Parliamentary Question last week, Finance Minister Clyde Caruana said the CBM Governor’s salary is now €115,000 plus an additional 20% ‘Responsibility bonus.’
Besides the €138,000 pay package, Scicluna also has a car, phone and medical insurance paid for by the Central Bank.
Caruana said that the governor’s salary was increased to address an ‘anomaly’ created when the salaries of the Deputy Governors were increased.
This week, the government announced the new Board of Governors of the Central Bank of Malta, of which Scicluna is a member. It is normal practice for sitting CBM governors to sit on the MFSA board. Board members currently earn around €12,000 per annum.
Sources said that Scicluna’s predecessor, Mario Vella, also drew his MFSA honoraria, but Scicluna’s decision to do the same, rather than relinquish the income, has raised eyebrows in view of the recent hefty pay rise to the role he now occupies.
Scicluna, in fact, is paid €38,000 more than his predecessor.
The Malta Independent on Sunday sent a number of questions to Scicluna, asking him what his total remuneration at the CBM is, and whether he can provide this newspaper with a copy of his contract.
We also asked him to confirm that he has asked to receive the €12,000 MFSA honoraria and whether he thinks this is excessive, given the recent increase to the salary of CBM Governor.
In a curt reply, his aide said: “The Governor has nothing to add to the information given by the Minister in written replies to the Parliamentary Questions on the topic.”
But a search on Parliament’s website shows that the only question in which Caruana was asked whether Scicluna will be drawing additional pay from the MFSA or the European Central Bank (as Governor of the CBM, Scicluna also sits on the Governing Board of the ECB) has not yet been answered by the minister.
In fact, Caruana told PN MP Therese Comodini Cachia, who placed the question, that he will be answering in a future sitting.
In the other two PQs that Caruana recently answered about the topic, the minister only confirmed Scicluna’s €115k (plus 20% bonus) package and the perks that come with the job.
It is understood that the CMB and MFSA salaries are not Scicluna’s only income. For the past few years, Scicluna has declared over €45,000 a year in ‘dividends, interests and pensions.’
As a former MP and MEP, he is entitled to pensions from both the Maltese House of Representatives and the European Parliament.
In his latest declaration of assets submitted in Parliament, Scicluna also declared over €150,000 in government stocks as well as local bank deposits of €745,000.
He also declared a University of Malta ‘honoraria’ of €4,617 as a part-time lecturer.
Scicluna’s salary and perks
CBM Governor’s salary: €115,000
20% Responsibility bonus: €23,000
Perks: Car, phone and medical insurance
MFSA honoraria: €12,000
Total income: €150,000
By comparison, the Prime Minister earns around €63,000 and a minister earns around €56,000.