Jersey continues to highlight its expertise in key markets, expanding its reach internationally while announcing innovative measures to meet market demands.
The latest Global Financial Centres Index places Jersey as the highest rated offshore international finance centre and Jersey is the only offshore jurisdiction to feature in the world's top ten for private banking and wealth management. Our consistent ranking in the Index – six times in a row as top rated offshore location - is hugely encouraging and helps reinforce our standing and reputation for financial services globally.
As worldwide markets recover, we have the ideal platform from which to promote our offering. This is true in the more mature markets of the UK and Continental Europe and also further afield, where there is increasing demand for Jersey - a stable, well regulated jurisdiction, packed with expertise in key sectors of finance, and in close proximity to London and to the Western markets.
We have some of the best financial legislation and regulation in the world and over the years we have been adept in maintaining and improving our laws and in adhering to international regulatory standards. This commitment to high standards has resulted in wide recognition from international bodies including the OECD and IMF.
High quality regulation and corporate governance are important features in building business in the new powerhouse economies. Through our Government we are progressing agreements and treaties with other nations and this is helping Jersey gain market access and greater recognition for the quality of our corporate governance.
Our newly signed Tax Information Exchange Agreement with India is assisting us to rapidly expand our business in that region. Jersey's Government has also recently negotiated double tax agreements with Hong Kong and Qatar and our regulator has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Central Bank of the UAE. We are firmly establishing ourselves in these locations, assisted by the representative offices that we have opened in Hong Kong and Abu Dhabi. Furthermore we have started to develop links with universities and educational bodies in the Gulf with a view to establishing internship programmes as a way of fostering greater understanding of the specifics of our industry. This follows a highly successful six month stay in Jersey recently by two Qatari nationals from the Qatar National Bank and the Commercial Bank of Qatar, who visited to observe first-hand how Jersey businesses operate and to develop relationships between Jersey and Qatar.
In the funds sector we have implemented a new regime for Private Placement Funds, which has widened the choice for investors. it is designed for 'fast track' approval, providing speed and certainty for investors and complementing the existing Expert Fund regime, giving an additional boost to our alternatives fund business.
Company legislation is increasingly used by lawyers advising investors in China, India and elsewhere to establish entities efficiently before listing on many of the world's major stock exchanges. The most recent figures confirm that there are 34 main market listings of Jersey companies on the world's exchanges, with a total market capitalisation of more than £78 billion.
Jersey's leading position as a centre for trusts, complemented now by the availability of foundations, has wide appeal in global centres in the emerging regions and enhancements to trust legislation will come on the statute in Jersey later this year, adding to the options for high net worth clients and their advisers.
Articles in this latest edition of Finance Update demonstrate Jersey's unrivalled and wide ranging expertise in international finance. Jersey's political and economic stability should not be under-estimated, nor should the inherent skills that the jurisdiction's workforce offers, thanks to decades of growth and diversification.
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