There are many countries that claim that their territory was once part of Atlantis. Scholars and ancient writers place Atlantis or Atland as it is sometimes called in Sweden while others state that the continent extended from the Azores to the Bahamas. Many believe that Atlantis is only a legend, while others are of the opinion that it really existed and state that it was somewhere in the Atlantic Ocean close to the Mediterranean.
Maltese archaeology scholars claim and bring forth proof that Malta and Gozo are the real surviving patches of land that was once Atlantis. What if this theory were internationally accepted to be true? How would Malta and Gozo benefit? Obviously they would go to the top of the popularity charts and would be highlighted on the map of the world. There are people in the world who do not yet know where Malta and Gozo are situated or even that they exist. This ‘discovery’ would brand these islands as the cradle of civilization and knowledge in the eyes of the whole world. The Maltese Islands already rank high for archaeology and history but such hot news would surely result in a fanastic upsurge of popularity.
The existing archaeological sites, especially Ggantija (Gee gun tee ah) would be seen in a new light and culture tourism would increase ten-fold and more with archaeology, anthropology and history scholars flocking in their thousands to our shores. Our islands would become the venue of high-class culture tourism with all the advantages that go with it.
Tourism is one of the pillars of the Maltese (Gozitan) economy and employs about one-third of the total workforce with people working in hotels and restaurants and many other ancillary service industries. Hotels would have to be upgraded and new ones built to accommodate the larger number of ‘better-spending’ visitors. Employment would rise and with it the local economy.
And culture breeds culture. The University of Malta is bound to have a large increase in the number of foreign applicants wanting to pursue their studies or to read for their degrees here. The same could be said for the local Language Schools. The number of students wanting to study and learn English will likewise increase. More money coming in to these institutions and more chances for the Apartment owners to rent out their properties at good prices because of the high demand.
The islands, already very popular with divers would become the number one diving spot in the whole world. The submerged megaliths (2 kms off Sliema for example) would now be given a new dimension and scuba divers, in love with the underwater sea-scape would undoubtedly find a new attraction in them. The greater influx of diving enthusiasts would necessitate more diving clubs to open their doors to cater for their needs. Hence more jobs and more foreign currency to our coffers.
With the economy on an upward trend foreign investment, like banks, insurance companies and other financial institutions cannot fail to be drawn to our shores resulting in further increases in employment and foreign currency.
One could go on and mention other openings and possibilities like the Film industry, grants from the European Union and UNESCO to protect certain areas on and around the Islands or to provide or constuct better means of access to the more interesting sites.
Highly learned people are still delving deeply in the matter in an attempt to find concrete proof to strengthen their theory. Who knows, perhaps one day they will succeed in proving once and for all that the Maltese Archipelago is indeed the small surviving part of the Continent of Atlantis and Malta and Gozo would start reaping all these benefits. Regarding the disadvantages of this acquisition, I cannot think of any.
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