Guernsey's fiduciary offering has struck a chord with industry professionals in the Far East, according to a leading international private client lawyer.

Nick Jacob, Partner, Tax and Private Capital, Lawrence Graham LLP, chaired the Guernsey fiduciary seminars during the Island's recent delegation to Hong Kong and Shanghai.

"Historically many practitioners in China have been familiar with trust and corporate structures from the BVI and Cayman but less aware of what other international finance centres can offer. However, more recently this has begun to change with Guernsey in particular starting to get its name known in the region," said Mr Jacob.

"I believe that professionals in the Far East should be made aware that their high net worth clients – individuals and institutions – can benefit from using trust and corporate services in Guernsey. The Island already has a great heritage of excellence in providing fiduciary services internationally and its offering has been enhanced this year through the introduction of a new Trust Law, a new Company Law and a new Company Registry.

"What we saw at the seminars is that these messages, and particularly the services of the new Company Registry, really seemed to strike a chord with local lawyers, accountants and trust professionals. The results seem very positive for Guernsey both in terms of winning business off the back of this delegation and also for its long term success of securing flows from China."

The delegation spent one week in Hong Kong (5th-11th October) and the second week in Shanghai (12th-17th October). The team was showcasing Guernsey as lead sponsor and exhibitor at the STEP Asia conference in Hong Kong, through a series of meetings with key decision makers in the two centres and at specific trust and company seminars – chaired by Mr Jacob – in both locations.

Peter Niven, Chief Executive of Guernsey Finance, added: "We have been very pleased with the positive reaction that we have received from the professionals in Hong Kong and Shanghai. The Guernsey industry practitioners that came on the delegation are reporting that they now have pieces of business in the pipeline as a direct result of their participation.

"What I think has contributed to our success is that we did not just have Guernsey industry practitioners singing our own praises but in Nick we also had third-party endorsement from a highly regarded and very experienced lawyer who was able to speak with authority on using international finance centres such as Guernsey for clients in the region."

It was announced earlier this week that Tu Guangshao, the Vice-Mayor of Shanghai, will visit Guernsey this month to see at first hand the infrastructure and expertise that makes the Island a leading international finance centre.

The Vice-Mayor will be joined by Zhang Yujun, President of the Shanghai Stock Exchange, as well as local government officials. Their itinerary includes a presentation about the Channel Islands Stock Exchange (CISX) as well as meeting with leading politicians and government officials; Peter Neville, Director General of the Guernsey Financial Services Commission (GFSC); and senior industry practitioners such as Steve Le Page, Chairman of the Guernsey International Business Association (GIBA).

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