Film Commissioner Johann Grech gets €90,000 raise amid mounting scandals

Grech earns more than €12,500 a month.

 

Aqra dan l-artiklu bil-Malti

Prime Minister Robert Abela has increased Film Commissioner Johann Grech’s annual financial package by €90,000 to €150,000, almost three times the salary of a cabinet minister.

For years, the government has refused to divulge Grech’s engagement contracts, but his new four-year contract, signed in 2023 and obtained by The Shift through a Freedom of Information (FOI) request, details a package of more than €150,000 a year.

This shows an increase of €90,000 on his previous package – a parliamentary question in 2020 showed he was earning €60,000 at the time.

His new contract shows that apart from a €115,000 basic salary, Grech receives a €11,500 “disturbance allowance”, a €10,000 expense allowance, a fully expensed car, and a mobile phone, amounting to an annual financial package of more than €12,500 a month.

Grech’s new contract also states he is entitled to reimbursement of all expenses abroad, including when entertaining his guests, accommodation and the payment of undisclosed fees for membership of associations and clubs related to the film industry.

 

August 2023: Just after spending millions on a festival, Grech had his contract revised upwards by €90,000 a year

Grech, until 2013, an employee at a small Gozitan marketing company, was appointed chief marketing officer for disgraced former prime minister Joseph Muscat.

Then, in 2015, he was appointed Film Commissioner despite his limited experience in the sector.

His last six years in the position have been peppered with several controversial decisions that saw millions of euro spent on direct orders for unnecessarily extravagant events, some of which happened to benefit the Labour Party’s PR at critical times in electoral campaigns.

Recently, it was revealed Grech had spent some €120,000 to hire British comedian David Walliams to present a glitzy film awards ceremony in 2022 – an election year.

The government has done little to stop Grech’s spending, including more than €600,000 on travel and estimated millions for the 2022 Malta Film Awards and the 2023 Mediterrane Film Festival, among other grand events.

He also allocated to the producers of Gladiator an unprecedented €47 million in tax refunds and incentives, ruffling feathers in the film industry in Malta and abroad.

While Tourism Minister Clayton Bartolo attempted to justify Grech’s spending sprees as an ‘investment’ in the Maltese economy, he has refused to publish a study that claimed for every €1 Grech spent, he brought in €3 in return.

                           

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Toni Borg
Toni Borg
2 months ago

this little island really amazes me to say the least.

I remember the halla balloo the PL raised under Gonzi’s legislature when ministers were given a Eur500 weekly raise. Whilst questions may be raised as to how this was implemented, this was done to ensure they would be fully committed to their work.

Fast forward a few years on and now we have practically every PL lackey on a consultancy or Position of Trust job earning hundreds of thousands with some of them, barely lacking any qualification whatsoever except that they belong to the Labour Party.

Why aren’t people protesting now? Is it because the majority are on the state pay roll? Is it because they are getting ‘paid’ for their loyalty?

This free disbursement of tax payers money is not only piling up our debit but also not resulting in any significant economic benefit to the country……and yet, we sit still rolling our thumbs as if nothing is happening, whilst pensioners and families on minimum wages have to find ways and means of how to make best with their earnings given the spiralling cost of living.

M.Galea
M.Galea
2 months ago
Reply to  Toni Borg

Bingo! Kemm ghamlu storbju fi zmien Gonzi issa kullhadd rieqed! Ghax kullhadd immanipulat, kullhadd aljenta, kullhadd ferhan jiehu l loan u jinvesti fil kantun! U l bqija xejn ma jimpurtani! X poplu ehh!?

Michael Borg
Michael Borg
2 months ago
Reply to  Toni Borg

Gonzi’s €500 a week, which the Labour MPs also approved, NEVER HAPPENED.
You are wrong to mention it, in the way you did.

Simon Camilleri
Simon Camilleri
2 months ago
Reply to  Toni Borg

Exactly. There are more dishonest selfish people in Malta than good people and so they keep voting for the pigs whilst being fed scraps. The Maltese nation, and yes I mean the general public, are inherently corrupt and greedy.

SM72
SM72
2 months ago

Malta is corrupt to the core. It dates back to the era of the corsairs. It is part and parcel of the DNA.

D. Borg
D. Borg
2 months ago

and Clyde Caruana expects us to pay our “fair” share of taxes…

D M Briffa
D M Briffa
2 months ago

This is deliberately provocative. Fine. Add it to the list, and one day these excesses, these insults will come back to haunt Abela.

J. Degabriele
J. Degabriele
2 months ago
Reply to  D M Briffa

Let’s hope so

viv
viv
2 months ago
Reply to  D M Briffa

Amazingly he is out-mussoliniing his predecessor – but that’s not entirely by volition. His day will come, for sure.

makjavel
makjavel
2 months ago

Must be turning stone chippings to Gold, according to that other smiling stupid.

Anne R. key
Anne R. key
2 months ago

This country is heading for a revolution…… This cannot and must not persist!

Last edited 2 months ago by Anne R. key
Mark Debono
Mark Debono
2 months ago
Reply to  Anne R. key

But it will as there are far to many sheep on the island yet the price of mutton is extortionate

Charles Vassallo
Charles Vassallo
2 months ago

With all due respect… WTF!? €150,000 p.a. for this sorry excuse of a person who has no experience at all in the film industry?! Jesus wept.

P.N. wake up from your slumber and get your bloody house in order as you shall certainly get another drubbing in the next general elections!

Bernard Grech is and sorry to say, bloody hopeless, together with some opposition ministers, doing fu*k all to confront such a corrupt and powerful Labour cabal in government!

Xoghol (ghal minn haqqu), Gustizja u Haqq (ghal minn hexa dan il-Pajjiz), Liberta shiha (ghal gurnalisti li jikxfu il-hmieg u l-korruzjoni taht dan il gvern hekk moqziez Laburista.)

Fejn intom Nazzjonalisti, min qieghed jiderregikom? Fejn qieghed Bernard Grech?! Qum min dik iz-*bb ta’raqda! Malta qeda tereq!

Hawn min jghid li dak iz-zmien f’ tmeninijiet, kien zmien iehor…. LE, LE u LE! Anzi, ilum irridu niggieldu izjed min dak iz-zmien kiefer!

Hemm bzonn li l-Oppozizjoni tqum fuq taghha,tnaddaf dal l-aqbut fosthom u tqum kontra dan il-gvern korrot ghal l-ahhar, laburista.

Dizzobbedenzja Civili Bernrad Grech! Hekk, jew ghamlu ghaxar snien ohra issahuna dak is-siggu fil-Paralment!

G.DIMECH
G.DIMECH
2 months ago

Din l-ahhar darba li sejer nivvota ghax telfa ohra u l-anqas jek nghix sa mitt sena ma nohrog nivvota u tghidux li qed tahdmu bilsienkom barra ghax il-messagg ma wasalx

Mark Debono
Mark Debono
2 months ago

I think it is obvious who is controlling Bernard Grech and it is no one from his side? It seems he is someone’s puppet.

Michael Borg
Michael Borg
2 months ago

Most of your comments are unfair on the Opposition. This news has just become public, haven’t you realised. Calm down and have a Kit Kat!

Simon Camilleri
Simon Camilleri
2 months ago

If you can’t find a reason to vote for anyone except the PL then you are part of the problem. I would vote for a puddle of water if it meant removing these pigs raping our country.

Joseph
Joseph
2 months ago

Seems to me Abela is the least paid in the government. How does he manage, poor thing!

Mick
Mick
2 months ago

The 1.7Billion increase in borrowing won’t even get on the books at this rate! Obviously the more incompetent and brainless you are, is immediate qualification for for ” extra remuneration” and most likely another chairmanship for a bit more. These Mafioso really couldn’t give a fuck, they ‘ll just keep doing it, because no one is willing to put their head above the parapet and vociferously protest at the on going theft of public money. Long overdue is a “French style” peoples protest outside parliament and the Castille to flush these horrendous thieves out of power and into jail. Tomorrow would be good, but highly unlikely, just sit at the keyboard and hope someone else will rid the Island of this infestation of rats. Dream on!!

viv
viv
2 months ago
Reply to  Mick

Such actions require CIA backing to even think of success. Who wants to be the Maltese Navalny? Russia has more than a finger in the Mediterranean pie.

Last edited 2 months ago by viv
Out of Curiosity
Out of Curiosity
2 months ago

But is it possible that we have to wait for a general election to throw this corrupt lot and robbers out of Government? Where is the opposition?

M.Galea
M.Galea
2 months ago

Hopeless opposition!

Michael Borg
Michael Borg
2 months ago

DAN MHUX JOHANN JISMU, IMMA MIDAS!
DIN DAQQA TA HARTA LI-PRODUTTURI LOKALI!
SEWWA QALET, ROSIANNE………KULHADD JITHANZER!
Labour, surely looks after their own, even to the detriment to the Film Industry, which it says it wants to nurture.
Local producers have been begging, for years, for a fair amount of aid which has consistently been denied them and yet there is money galore for the Labour pigs.

Anthony Cassar
Anthony Cassar
2 months ago

One can only TRY to imagine what the ones approving this pigging are taking themselves.

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