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Amid global regulatory changes and moves for ever greater transparency, Jude Scott, CEO of Cayman Finance, discusses how Cayman’s robust regulatory platforms will stand it in good stead as a flight to quality of financial services firms towards better jurisdictions takes place.
How do you see the rules on corporate governance changing?
The Cayman Islands fund governance sector has a reputation for excellence and is client-centred, transparent and competitive as a result of the depth of expertise available. There is a range of business models within the sector, which differ based on company size, structure, governance model and client complexity.
Members of the Cayman Islands Directors Association comply with a Code of Conduct which is among the highest international standards and is based on the Code of Professional Conduct adopted by the UK Institute of Directors. In addition, they are required to register with the Cayman Islands Monetary Authority (CIMA) and comply with the Statement of Guidance for Regulated Mutual Funds issued by CIMA.
Given the global shift towards higher standards around corporate governance, what might this mean for Cayman?
We have already been experiencing a flight to quality to Cayman from a number of jurisdictions. We are seeing top quality fund managers who have a focus on high standards, rather than low cost options, locating to Cayman. These clients want to be located where they see other similar top quality clients doing business.
When it comes to global standards, Cayman is a leading jurisdiction that values sound governance practices and continues to evolve them in a very balanced way.
Due to our considerable experience in developing, implementing and evolving appropriate corporate governance, Cayman is often at the table internationally as more global standards are being considered.
What is the view of Cayman Finance as to the depth of talent on Cayman? Does anything need to be done to ensure its pool of talent remains healthy?
The Cayman Islands has developed an optimal infrastructure ecosystem for the world-class financial services that our various stakeholders have developed, bringing together financial services, development, tourism, telecommunications, cuisine, healthcare and transportation.
"Cayman is already the third largest domicile holding US treasuries, demonstrating our ability to accumulate investment capital from around the world that can be invested into further US treasuries."
This ecosystem positions Cayman well to attract and retain world-class local and international talent who are looking for centres of excellence and quality of life.
It also allows us to attract clients such as family offices, reinsurance providers, investment managers, fund administrators, fintech IP developers and others to set up a physical presence in our jurisdiction.
Are you concerned by any international regulations or initiatives in the pipeline that might harm Cayman as a financial hub?
Cayman has a strong dynamic regulatory platform that responds extremely well to change. We are thus well positioned to deal with uncertainties.
The key is to continue to proactively and positively engage with all relevant stakeholders and to focus on creating better awareness around the quality of our trusted jurisdiction and the many ways it supports strong global trade capital and financing flows in an efficient and effective way.
How might other international developments including Trump’s presidency and Brexit impact Cayman?
Cayman is a ‘global extender of value’ for G20 countries, their multinationals, and their citizens, to be competitive through global trade investing and financing. With more than 70 percent of global hedge funds and thousands of private equity funds, Cayman is well positioned to support the G20 and developing countries with inward investing and financing that provides liquidity and funding—helping them to have strong economies, invest in needed infrastructure, and create jobs.
Cayman is also well positioned to support the US if the new administration continues its focus on infrastructure. Cayman is already the third largest domicile holding US treasuries, demonstrating our ability to accumulate investment capital from around the world that can be invested into further US treasuries to assist with financing their major infrastructure projects.
Jude Scott is the chief executive officer of Cayman Finance.
Corporate governance, Cayman, Cayman Islands Directors Association, UK Institute of Directors, CIMA, Jurisdictions, US Treasuries, Trump, Brexit, G20