The Key Employee Initiative (KEI)


New scheme for Non-EU Individuals seeking employment and residence in Malta

Identity Malta has introduced a new scheme entitled ‘The Key Employee Initiative’ (KEI). The aim of this scheme is to facilitate and fast track the application process to highly-specialised third-country nationals who seek employment in Malta.


An individual may apply for a work/residence permit under the scheme if s/he intends to apply for a managerial or a highly-technical post which requires specific qualifications or adequate experience. This scheme is also open to innovators who are involved in start-up projects which are specifically approved by Malta Enterprise. 

Individuals applying under the KEI must satisfy the following: 

  • receive an annual gross salary of at least € 30,000;
  • provide certified copies of the relevant qualifications, warrants or the necessary work experience; and 
  • provide a declaration by the employer stating that they have the necessary credentials to perform the duties being assigned.


Once the application is validated and approved, the applicant will be issued with a residence permit which is valid for one year. The permit may then be renewed for a maximum period of three years, subject to the submission of the documentation requested by Identity Malta.


Permits are issued within five working days from the date of submission of the application. 


The applicant does not need to be physically present to submit the application, therefore the applicant would not need to travel to Malta purposely to submit the application.

Our Services

Nexia BT can assist with the application process under the Key Employee Initiative for third country nationals. Kindly contact us on and one of our advisors will assist you further.