Aqra dan l-artiklu bil-Malti.
The Office of the Prime Minister (OPM) acquired the latest luxury Range Rover model for Prime Minister Robert Abela in September 2023, his third official car since he became prime minister in 2020.
The brand-new Sports Utility Vehicle (SUV), a Range Rover P510e, which Abela is using as his official car, has a market price tag of €130,000 but was purchased by the OPM from Muscat Motors through direct order for €90,000.
The government is exempted from paying taxes, such as customs duties for official vehicles.
Between May 2020 and September 2020, the prime minister leased a new, electric BMW 530iPerformance. According to answers to parliamentary questions, this cost €13,200, paid to an unnamed company.
The lease stopped several months ago when the brand-new SUV was delivered.
Between January 2020 – when Abela became Prime Minister and May 2020, Abela also used a different leased BMW.
Abela’s new electric Range Rover, described by its manufacturer as “the fastest ever built” and “fit to reign the roads”, is the second SUV assigned for the personal use of the prime minister.
Another SUV – a Range Rover Evoque – was bought as a second car for Abela in September 2020. The vehicle, mostly used by his wife Lydia, was also bought from Muscat Motors through a direct order for €43,000, without tax.
Asked through a Freedom of Information request for a copy of the lease or purchase contracts related to the vehicles Abela has used since taking office, the OPM turned down the request.
Instead, the OPM said that apart from the price paid for its purchase, the second SUV, used by Lydia, has incurred €21,705 in expenses since September 2020, including insurance, licenses, and maintenance. Meanwhile, the prime minister’s official new car has cost €4,500 in expenses since its purchase a few months ago.
Unlike his ministers, the prime minister is allowed two government cars, one for official use and the other for private journeys.
Cabinet members are only given one official car, which they can use both officially and privately in Malta.