During a visit to Guernsey the Financial Times has found that the Island is well-placed to weather the current economic turmoil.
That was the message the newspaper's John Willman received from panellists at a breakfast forum hosted by the Image Group and the Financial Times to coincide with last Friday's release of the FT's 'Doing Business in Guernsey' special report.
"Guernsey's model, which is well-regulated and low risk, is ideally placed to both withstand the turmoil witnessed in financial markets in recent weeks and also to assist in providing both liquidity and stability," said Chief Minister Lyndon Trott.
The forum was Chaired by journalist Mr Willman and the other panellists were Mark Trenchard, from the Island's Chamber of Commerce; Tony Mancini, Executive Director, Tax, KPMG CI; and Bob Moore, representing Guernsey Finance – the promotional agency for the Island's finance industry.
They agreed that Guernsey's diversification and adaptability mean the Island is likely to continue to perform robustly despite the very difficult market conditions.
These thoughts echoed sentiments brought to the fore in the 'Doing Business in Guernsey' special report where headlines included "sector stays on course in global crisis" and "credit squeeze plays to the island's strengths."
The front page is titled "Island thrives by looking outwards" and notes how Guernsey has "a long tradition of exploiting opportunities its location offers." It also reports on the fact that "the Island's continuing efforts to improve its legislation and regulatory framework" mean that it is "holding its own against bigger rivals."
In that same piece Mr Willman reports that: "there is no evidence that Guernsey is losing its allure for the financial services businesses that have flocked to the island for its combination of high regulatory standards and a flexible approach to innovative new products."
It points to the fact that this year Guernsey has introduced a new Trust Law, new Company Registry and new Company Law. At the forum both the new registry and Intellectual Property were raised as areas for potential growth.
Speaking last Friday morning Mr Mancini stressed that the fallout from the current turmoil may also present the Island with some further opportunities.
"A potential effect of the current situation is that there are demands for greater and stricter regulation. From a Guernsey perspective this is an area where we have harnessed a well-deserved reputation for robust yet pragmatic regulation and therefore we are very well-placed – particularly in comparison with some of our competitors – to capitalise on these potential developments," said Mr Mancini.
The 'Doing Business in Guernsey' special report can be downloaded www.ft.com/guernsey2008
For more information about Guernsey's finance industry please visit www.guernseyfinance.com.
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