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The Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children

In the early years of the 21st Century, 2000 to 2025                        

Republic of Malta

Malta produces only about 20% of its food needs, has limited fresh water supplies, and has few domestic energy sources. Malta's geographic position between the EU and Africa makes it a recipient of illegal immigration, which has strained Malta's political and economic resources. The financial services industry has grown in recent years, but is not fully modernized. Malta's economy is dependent on foreign trade, manufacturing - especially electronics and pharmaceuticals - and tourism all of which have been negatively affected by the global economic downturn.  [The World Factbook, U.S.C.I.A. 2009]

Description: Malta

CAUTION:  The following links and accompanying text have been culled from the web to illuminate the situation in Malta.  Some of these links may lead to websites that present allegations that are unsubstantiated, misleading or even false.   No attempt has been made to validate their authenticity or to verify their content.



If you are looking for material to use in a term-paper, you are advised to scan the postings on this page and others to see which aspects of child prostitution are of particular interest to you.  You might be interested in exploring how children got started, how they survive, and how some succeed in leaving.  Perhaps your paper could focus on runaways and the abuse that led to their leaving.  Other factors of interest might be poverty, rejection, drug dependence, coercion, violence, addiction, hunger, neglect, etc.  On the other hand, you might choose to write about the manipulative and dangerous adults who control this activity.  There is a lot to the subject of Child Prostitution.  Scan other countries as well as this one.  Draw comparisons between activity in adjacent countries and/or regions.  Meanwhile, check out some of the Term-Paper resources that are available on-line.


Check out some of the Resources for Teachers attached to this website.

HELP for Victims

Human trafficking hotline
Country code: 356 –



Malta ratifies treaty banning sale, prostitution of children during annual UN event

UN News Centre, 28 September 2010

[accessed 20 February 2011]

A top United Nations official today hailed Malta’s ratification of a global treaty banning the sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography as a critical step towards protecting the rights of young people.

The treaty, one of two Optional Protocols to the Convention on the Rights of the Child, extends the obligations of States parties to guarantee the protection of children from sale, pornography and prostitution, through explicit prohibition of these acts in their laws.

It strengthens the protection of the rights of child victims and consolidates international cooperation to fight impunity for crimes against children, including the sale of children, trafficking and sexual exploitation.


*** ARCHIVES ***

ECPAT Regional Overview: The Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children in Europe [PDF]

ECPAT International, November 2014

[accessed 3 September 2020]

Maps sexual exploitation of children in travel and tourism (SECTT), online child sexual exploitation (OCSE), trafficking of children for sexual purposes, sexual exploitation of children through prostitution, and child early and forced marriage (CEFM). Other topics include migration, child labour, racism and dicsminitation, welfare systems, gender inequality.

Human Rights Reports » 2019 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices

U.S. Dept of State Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, March 10, 2020

[accessed 3 September 2020]

SEXUAL EXPLOITATION OF CHILDREN - The law prohibits the commercial sexual exploitation of children and child pornography, and authorities generally enforced the law. The production of child pornography is prohibited and punishable by imprisonment for five to 12 years. Possession of child pornography is punishable by imprisonment of three to four years. The minimum age of consensual sex is 16. Rape of an underage person is punishable by sentences of six to 20 years. As of the end of September, four persons were charged for sexual abuse of minors.

Concluding Observations Of The Committee On The Rights Of The Child (CRC)

UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, 2 June 2000

[accessed 1 March 2011]

[47] The Committee is concerned at the insufficient data and awareness of the phenomenon of commercial sexual exploitation of children in the State party, and at the absence of a comprehensive and integrated approach to preventing and combating this phenomenon.

Malta is to ratify six international conventions

The Malta Independent

[accessed 20 February 2011]

The Cabinet has approved the ratification of six international conventions. These are: The Convention for Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters between European Union Member States of 29 May, 2000, and the relevant protocol, the protocol for the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, on the Sale of Children, Child Prostitution and Child Pornography; the European Council’s Convention on Money Laundering, and the Financing of Terrorism; The United Nations Convention against Corruption; the Convention for the Protection of Financial Instruments of the European Communities, and the relevant protocols; and the European Council’s Convention for Action against Human Trafficking.

Five Years After Stockholm [PDF]

ECPAT: Fifth Report on implementation of the Agenda for Action

ECPAT International, November 2001

[accessed 13 September 2011]

[B] COUNTRY UPDATES – MALTA – The Committee recalled the recommendations formulated by the Stockholm Agenda for Action and proposed that a national study on CSEC be carried with the aim of designing appropriate policies and programs.

Age of Consent Laws Subject to Interpretation

Dr. Aron Mifsud-Bonnici, 20 Aug 1998

[accessed 19 June 2011]

Maltese law makes it an offence for a person to "defile" a minor.  Consequently, the predominant view is that when a minor is involved (ie a person under the age of 18) there is a criminal offence. This is, however, subject to interpretation.

Besides, the term "defile" must be put in context. Eg, if a person is sexually mature (even if minor) then he/she cannot be defiled. Thus the sexual intercourse would probably be legal.  One thing to note is that if a person involved in a sexual relationship in under the age of 12 then there is a legal presumption that there was rape.  Nonetheless, it is safer to state that the age of consent in Malta is 18.

National Laws - Legislation of Interpol member states on sexual offences against children

Interpol, Spring 2006

[accessed 19 June 2011]

I. AGES FOR LEGAL PURPOSES - Age of consent for a sexual activity - Eighteen (18) years.

All material used herein reproduced under the fair use exception of 17 USC § 107 for noncommercial, nonprofit, and educational use.  PLEASE RESPECT COPYRIGHTS OF COMPONENT ARTICLES.  Cite this webpage as: Patt, Prof. Martin, "Child Prostitution - Malta",, [accessed <date>]