Cervical cancer is a common female malignancy of global dimensions. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) play crucial roles in the development, differentiation, proliferation, and apoptosis of tumors. The non-coding RNA MALAT1 participates in various physiological processes that are important for proper functioning of the body. Here, we analyzed the expression of miRNA-143 and MALAT1 in HeLa cells to evaluate their roles in the occurrence and metastasis of cervical cancer. HeLa cells were divided into five groups depending on the treatment conditions, namely, transfected with miRNA-143, MALAT1, miRNA-143 inhibitor and the MALAT1 inhibitor, and the untreated control. Reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction was used to analyze the expression of miRNA-143 and MALAT1, the 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT) assay to assess proliferation, the trans-well assay to study cell invasion and migration, and western blot to analyze the levels of E-cadherin and vimentin. The proliferation of HeLa cells increased upon treatment with the miRNA-143 inhibitor and decreased when treated with the MALAT1 inhibitor, compared to the proliferation of the groups that were transfected with miRNA-143 and MALAT1, respectively (P < 0.05). Thus, miRNA-143 decreased cell invasion and migration potency, downregulated vimentin and upregulated E-cadherin expression, while MALAT1 had the opposite effects. In conclusion, the low expression of miRNA-143 and high expression of MALAT1 in cervical cancer cells could possibly potentiate cell invasion/migration and alter the levels of vimentin and E-cadherin.