Recent statistics show that the number of funds based in Cayman has remained steady in recent years, a clear demonstration of the Cayman Islands’ continued prominent position as an important global financial services centre, according to Cindy Scotland of the Cayman Islands Monetary Authority.
In the past 12 months, we have seen the continued steady growth in overall assets managed by Cayman-based funds and a clear demonstration of the Cayman Islands’ continued prominent position as an important global financial services centre.
The confidence demonstrated by investment managers in the jurisdiction’s regulatory regime, which remains the premier domicile of choice for funds, confirms that Cayman’s mix of a comprehensive legal and regulatory framework, which enables a systematic supervision of its regulated industry sectors, along with the availability of skilled and reputable professional services providers, is efficient and effective.
The total number of funds regulated by the Cayman Islands Monetary Authority (CIMA), as at December 31, 2019, was 10,857 compared with 10,992 a year earlier. There were ebbs and flows during 2019 but the numbers were higher than expected in the last quarter of the year resulting in an overall strong finish.
Although there was a small decline, we see this as a positive indication of a rebound in the funds sector, attributed mainly to the continued popularity of the Cayman fund structure and a sound regulatory regime. Investors’ demands and expectations are rising, as they continue to seek an environment where transparency, sound governance and operational efficiency are central to their investment return objectives. This was against a backdrop of many more regulatory changes.
Managing the pandemic
As we write this, however, our main concern is managing our response to the COVID-19 outbreak, which is an increasing concern and has been impacting many businesses worldwide.
At CIMA, we are proactively monitoring the COVID-19 outbreak and its effect on our operations. While the situation continues to evolve, the health, safety and physical wellbeing of our staff, stakeholders and licensees remain top priority.
As the primary financial services sector regulator in the Cayman Islands, we also want to ensure the continuity of the islands’ financial services business operations and delivery of key services at the highest level.
Following instructions received from the local government and recommendations of international health authorities, CIMA has invoked a mandatory remote work approach for all staff until further notice. Secure and fully tested virtual and operational platforms have been put in place to allow ‘business as usual’. Colleagues are encouraged to use available audio and video conferencing to conduct meetings in which CIMA is required to participate.
To assist the financial services industry, we have also taken various decisions to lessen some of the challenges licensees and registrants may face as a result of any disruptions to normal business operations during these times.
CIMA remains committed to delivering full operations to the financial services industry and will continue to make adjustments to our business continuity plan and our resources where it is appropriate or necessary to do so.
For the latest important updates, please visit our website.
Cindy Scotland is managing director of the Cayman Islands Monetary Authority. www.cima.ky
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