Mr Zahra joined the Malta Public Service in 1984 and served at the Economic Division within the Office of the Prime Minister. During 1989-1992, he was personal assistant to the Economic Secretary and Chief Economics Officer at the Ministry of Finance. In 1993 he was appointed Director (Economic Strategy) and subsequently Director General (Economic Policy).
Since 2001 Mr Zahra has discharged duties as Permanent Secretary in a number of Government Ministries, including the Ministry for Economic Services, Ministry of Finance, Ministry for Fair Competition, Small Business and Consumers and the Office of the Prime Minister.
In March 2013 he was appointed to the Ministry for European Affairs and Implementation of the Electoral Manifesto. In November 2020 he was appointed Permanent Secretary for EU Funds at the Office of the Prime Minister. In April 2022 he was appointed Permanent Secretary in the Ministry for the Economy, European Funds and Lands (European Funds) and in June 2022 he was appointed Permanent Secretary in the Ministry for Finance and Employment.
Mr Zahra also sits on a number of Government boards and committees. He has studied in Malta and the UK and is formally qualified in finance, management and law.