1 January 2008 has seen Malta welcome the Euro as its national currency, replacing the Maltese lira, Malta’s legal tender since 1974. "This is one of the biggest achievements. It wasn't easy, but I was always confident we'd make it", the Prime Minister Lawrence Gonzi was quoted as saying shortly after the official launch of the euro change-over, which brought to an end a successful 40 month preparation period.
The fixed exchange rate at which the Maltese lira was converted to Euro was €1=Lm0.4293, a rate fixed in 2005 when Malta was accepted to form part of ERM II. That rate remained unchanged and became the irrevocable exchange rate. Prior to that date, the value of the lira was calculated on the basis of weightings on a basket of currencies consisting of the US dollar, the Sterling and the Euro.