In accordance with the Agreement signed between the United Nations and the Government of Malta, the Institute aims to fulfill the training needs of low-income countries and to facilitate the implementation of the Madrid International Plan of Action on Ageing.

The Institute provides multi-disciplinary education and training in specific areas related to ageing, whilst also acting as a catalyst as regards the exchange of information on issues relating to ageing welfare. The Institute also seeks to achieve its mandate through ‘in-situ’ training programmes. The first ‘in-situ’ training programme was launched in Cape Town, South Africa, in 1995.

INIA’s training programmes are further reinforced by the Institute’s other activities – these being data collection, documentation, information exchange, technical co-operation as well as research and publications. INIA thus carries out Research Projects, hosts expert group meetings, and offers Consultancy Services. The Institute is also mandated to act catalytically, and to operate through a network of co-operative cost-sharing arrangements, internationally regionally and nationally in co-operation with the United Nations and its agencies, the Regional Commissions and governmental and non-governmental organisations.

As a sum up, the overall mandate of INIA is to empower low-income countries to cope with the challenges of the consequences of mass longevity in the next decades by building capacity for them to be able to educate and train their own personnel to formulate and implement their own appropriate policies. This is done through the establishment of regional training centres, through training key personnel in different aspects of ageing. This is done by means of international training programmes in Malta as well as through ‘in-situ’ training programmes. INIA also commits itself in providing continuing support and continuity to sustain both the individual personnel and the Centres through modern information technology. Lastly, INIA promotes interactive networks and partnerships to sustain these initiatives in low- income developing countries, and to make available in an appropriate mode, expertise from the high-income countries.