Despite recent negative portrayals in the United Kingdom about The Cayman Islands being a tax haven, Baroness Anelay, in her address to the Legislative Assembly spoke positively about the Cayman economy noting the rising GDP, increased employment figures, debt reductions and high tourist numbers. She acknowledged the integral role of the financial industry in making these advances, stating, “Of course your financial services sector is the driving force behind much of this impressive performance. As a leading international hub for pension fund investment and raising capital, the Cayman Islands bring real benefits to the global economy and onshore economies.”
She also admittedly recognised that though the regulation of the financial sector is oftentimes under much international scrutiny, “The sector as a whole is often in the spotlight and a subject of discussion amongst world leaders,” the country has a proven dedication to collaborative efforts and accountability, “but the Cayman Islands’ track record of cooperation and transparency speaks for itself. The need to make changes to counter serious and organised crime has been embraced by your financial sector, with the support of the Cayman Islands Government,” she said.
The Baroness also spoke on the interconnected relationship between the financial services sectors in the UK and the Cayman Islands, noting the mutual benefits experienced between the two, “The UK and Cayman Island economies also enjoy mutual benefits from our respective financial services sectors. The expertise of the City of London and the financial services providers on this island are second to none,” she said.
In praising the local financial industry, the Baroness gave an added boost to the reputation of the local financial sector, the second in the last month. In September one was received when Italy put The Cayman Islands on its “white list.” CEO, Cayman Finance, Mr Jude Scott, speaking in September of this year at the time of the Italian announcement said, “The inclusion of the Cayman Islands on Italy’s white-list echoes to the global financial services industry its recognition of our robust framework to combat corruption, money-laundering and tax evasion but also importantly, Cayman’s commitment to comply with international standards of transparency and exchange of information.”
The Cayman Islands has been on the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD’s) white list since 2009, which means that The Cayman Islands has been using internationally recognised tax standards, in the financial sector for over seven years.
Additionally, the Cayman Islands have been de-listed by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), and is a member of the Caribbean Financial Action Task Force.
The Baroness herself testified of the sound framework of our financial sector and the government’s commitment to transparency in regards to information exchanges and complying with international standards stating, “We welcome this willingness to adapt in response to and new evolving changes.”
Source: The Cayman Reporter