Following representations from the Cayman Islands Government, the Financial Conduct Authority, which regulates the UK's financial services industry, has confirmed that its list of 'High Risk Countries' has been removed from its website and that it does not plan to publish such a list in the future.
It also has committed to a full review of the methodology that resulted in the Cayman Islands being placed on the list.
'Government has been in continuing correspondence with the FCA regarding the list since our first letter of 8 July, and we recently sent correspondence to the UK Treasury, and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, on this matter as well,' Minister of Financial Services Wayne Panton said.
While recognising the FCA's actions, he said that questions regarding the FCA's methodology remain salient.
'Our industry regulator, the Cayman Islands Monetary Authority, will continue the dialogue with FCA officials to ensure they are accurately informed about our regime', Minister Panton said. In addition it is proposed that the Premier, the Hon. Alden McLaughlin, lead a small delegation, including Minister Panton, to the UK shortly to further discuss the circumstances around this issue with the FCO and other UK Government departments.
Highlighting one of the reasons why Cayman's inclusion on the previously published list is highly questionable, Minister Panton pointed to the fact that Cayman and the UK rated equally in the OECD's 2013 Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes rankings; in the Global Forum's assessment, Cayman's rating was higher than most of the G8 countries.
'The third-party data and assessments on Cayman's regime speak impartially and unambiguously regarding the strengths of our system', Minister Panton said.
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