Guernsey: Guernsey Maintains its Position as a Leading Finance Centre

Last Updated: 22 September 2010
Article by Peter Niven

Most Read Contributor in Guernsey, September 2016

Guernsey has been ranked 26th in the latest Global Financial Centres Index.

The Island has dropped four places overall from the last report published in March but retains its position as being in the very top bracket of 'offshore' centres.

"Overall I think we can be satisfied with the outcome of this report," said Peter Niven, Chief Executive of Guernsey Finance.

"We can see from the table that Guernsey is not alone – particularly among 'offshore' centres – in seeing a drop in its ranking. In fact, our underlying score actually fell by less than many of our traditional competitors and means that we very much maintain our place as a top tier 'offshore' finance centre. This also reinforces the picture painted by another recently published set of rankings from The Banker where we gained ground in a list of 'specialised' finance centres."

The Global Financial Centres Index has been published by the Z/Yen Group every six months for the last four years. The first seven reports were produced in association with the City of London but GFCI 8 is sponsored by the Qatar Financial Centre Authority. The tables are based on statistical information about each centre and also feedback from practitioners in the financial services industry globally.

GFCI 8 quotes an asset manager based in Edinburgh who says: "The Channel Islands continue to lead the way and are now pointing to the fact that they are not just 'offshore' centres."

Mr Niven added: "I would wholeheartedly endorse this comment. If third parties are making a distinction between 'onshore' and 'offshore' then Guernsey is very much a leader in 'offshore' but in reality we would rather differentiate centres by virtue of the services offered and standards to which they work and on this basis then there is no doubt that we are a leading international finance centre."

GFCI 7 in March saw London and New York level in the top spot but in this latest report the former has now regained the lead.

Guernsey's underlying score fell by 16 rating points to leave the Island in 26th position overall out of 75. This is behind Jersey (down 17 points and four places to 22nd) but ahead of the Isle of Man (down 20 points and eight places to 32nd), Hamilton/Bermuda (down 20 points and three places to 34th=) and Cayman Islands (down 23 points and six places to 34th=).

Mr Niven added: "The rankings are increasingly reflecting the growth of new and emerging financial hubs such as Taipei and Seoul. They have gained significantly from the last report and so have both Hong Kong, which increased by 21 points to stay third overall and in particular, Shanghai – picking up 25 rating points to move up five places from 11th to sixth.

"Shanghai has publicly set itself the goal of becoming a top tier international finance centre by 2020 and this sort of evidence backs up the progress we are seeing on the ground in terms of its increasing importance and influence not just in the region but globally. Of course, Guernsey made an early move to establish an office in the city and we have continued to build and strengthen relationships through regular visits, for example only last week I accompanied the Lord Mayor of the City of London to Beijing and Shanghai. It is this work which puts us in a very good position to take advantage of the business flowing through these rapidly developing centres."

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