Guernsey: Guernsey’s Delegation To China “Extremely Productive”
Last Updated: 12 March 2008

Guernsey’s delegation of senior government officials and business leaders has returned from Shanghai after what is being viewed as a very successful week-long visit to promote the Island’s depth of professionalism and expertise in financial services.

"We received an exceptionally warm welcome in Shanghai and have had an extremely productive week in launching the Guernsey brand in China," said Peter Niven, Chief Executive of GuernseyFinance – the promotional agency for the Island’s finance industry.

"The Island’s rich financial services heritage and its position as a leading international financial services centre have never been actively promoted in China before so there was little knowledge of our expertise, innovation and the positive, constructive manner of the way in which we work.

"The delegation has undoubtedly raised awareness within government circles and the business community of the Island’s capabilities and the fact that we now have an office in China provides us with a platform to continually build and strengthen these links even after the delegation has departed."

The delegation team rounded off the trip by giving a series of in-house presentations to companies already based in the city, including accountancy firms PricewaterhouseCoopers and Deloitte and law firms Herbert Smith and Clifford Chance.

"Making face to face contact with these practitioners has proved an invaluable experience," said Mr Niven.

"At the moment professionals in Shanghai have a strong awareness of centres such as the Cayman Islands and the British Virgin Islands (BVI). The meetings with these key decision makers gave us a chance to explain at first hand how Guernsey’s experience and expertise in providing a range of financial products and services would benefit their clients, whether institutional or individuals.

"Importantly these meetings have also allowed us to learn more about the myriad of potential opportunities that are open to us and particularly which are most viable in the short term and those that are prospects for the future."

The meetings represented the conclusion of the week-long visit to Shanghai by the Guernsey party. The delegation was led by Guernsey’s most senior politician, Chief Minister Mike Torode and also comprised: Mike Brown, Chief Executive of the States of Guernsey – the Island’s top civil servant; two representatives of the Guernsey Financial Services Commission (GFSC) – Peter Moffatt, Director of Investment Business and Michael Graham, Deputy Director of Insurance; and members of GuernseyFinance, including Mr Niven.

In addition, the Guernsey delegation comprised members of the Island’s finance industry: Sean Cheong (Collas Day); Lynn Giovinazzi (Louvre Group); Tony Mancini (KPMG); Peter Mills (Kleinwort Benson); Paul Arditti (Ince & Co/Compass); and Alan Pearce and John Hunter (Royal Bank of Canada). They were also joined by colleagues from the region: Yumei Zhang (Louvre Group, Hong Kong); and Simon Ng and Doris Young (Royal Bank of Canada, Asia).

The delegation team had already met with representatives from the British Consulate, the China-Britain Business Council (CBBC), the Bank of China and the Shanghai Stock Exchange, as well as holding discussions with Ma Hong, Vice-Chairman of the Shanghai Municipal Government Financial Services Office, who also attended the opening in the Guernsey office in the city, and talking to Tu Gaungshao, Vice-Mayor of the Shanghai People’s Municipal Government.

Guernsey has previously launched a Chinese version of its website www.guernseyfinance.com.cn to help communicate its messages within China.

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