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Government 27 Jan, 2022 Follow News


With reports of a looming threat of Cayman again being placed on a European Union watchlist over tax regulation compliance, the PACT government is being lobbied to expedite setting up an office in Brussels to make the case for Cayman directly.

The call comes from the opposition Progressives party which address its concerns over news that in the coming weeks the Government is expecting the Cayman Islands to be placed on yet another EU list of countries at high risk from money laundry.

While the Progressives claim that this was not unexpected, the party recalls that while in government it faced many such threats “and despite bumps in the road we successfully manoeuvred through them.”

Noting that it has been known for some time that Cayman would continue to face these threats, it presses the case to have a representative in Brussels “to develop relationships with the European Union and the various representatives of the EU states, and to argue our case daily.”

The party says that while in government it had started the process of establishing such a presence in Brussels, and accuses the current administration of dragging its feet on it despite committing to having a Cayman representative at the seat of EU decision-making.

“It was on that basis that the last Government, after consulting with the Financial Services Sector, developed plans for an overseas office in Brussels as a priority, with another one in Washington DC to follow, and finally an Asian Office in Hong Kong, or failing that perhaps in Singapore. The main role of the Brussels and Washington Offices would be to defend our financial services businesses.”

But the Progressives leader, Roy McTaggart says, “Despite our warning that dithering would likely be problematic, the PACT Government delayed the opening of Overseas Offices, including the important Brussels Office."

While he acknowledged that the current administration "did give some commitment to having an office in Brussels and Washington in place before the end of 2021," he said to date that has not been done.

“Well, 2021 has ended and the much-needed Brussels office has still not yet opened. Perhaps now that there is a threat of being listed this, and I suspect pressure from the Financial Services sector, will drive the Government to finally act,” Mr Mctaggart said in the release.

In appealing to the PACT administration to appoint the representatives, especially in Brussels, he said: “For the sake of the country and our financial services business I hope that they do act and do so quickly.”

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