By Sean Costello Head of Business Development for the Gulf Cooperation Council and India, Jersey Finance

Jersey's commercial ties with the GCC nations have never been stronger. Jersey Finance's new office in Abu Dhabi, established in response to increasing requirements from both corporate and private clients for international and cross border financial services, is clear evidence of Jersey's commitment to developing business in the Gulf.

Besides Jersey Finance, there are up to 10 Jersey firms with a presence in the GCC, with more actively planning one, and many more leading international banking and finance institutions with offices in the Gulf that also have a substantial office presence in Jersey. There are close contacts between the regulatory authorities in Jersey and those in the Gulf and high level governmental contacts have been maintained through the regular delegation visits that Jersey undertakes to GCC countries.

Jersey makes its mark in Abu Dhabi

The official opening of the Abu Dhabi office was celebrated at a reception at the British Embassy in March. A Jersey delegation including Jersey's Deputy Chief Minister, Senator Philip Ozouf, the Director-General of the Jersey Financial Services Commission and representatives of Jersey's finance industry attended the event, which was hosted by the British Ambassador HE Dominic Jermey CVO OBE and officiated by HE Sheikha Lubna bint Khalid bin Sultan Al Qasimi, Minister for Foreign Trade.

His Excellency Dominic Jermey told the invited guests that Jersey and London complemented each other as financial centres and were frequently part of the same transaction chain facilitating the deployment of mobile international capital. He was confident that a similar relationship would evolve between Jersey and the Abu Dhabi financial centre going forward.

Jersey Finance also marked its arrival in Abu Dhabi by sponsoring an event held at the British Embassy in April to celebrate The Queen's birthday. The party attracted hundreds of specially invited guests, including senior Emirati ministers, and was a wonderful opportunity to highlight Jersey Finance's new permanent presence in the region.

A strong and stable partner

Throughout the global financial crisis, Jersey has remained a strong, stable partner for international business, acting as a conduit for the distribution of capital to the world's leading finance centres and as a gateway to European markets. As the global recovery continues to gather pace led by the emerging economies, Jersey's legal and finance practitioners, working from a jurisdiction of substance with high standards of corporate governance, are well-placed to build on their long-established commercial ties with clients throughout the Gulf. In addition to our new permanent presence in Abu Dhabi, Jersey Finance has also recruited representatives in India, the UAE's biggest trading partner. We are confident that this link will be of great value going forward, as Jersey continues to grow its business across the region.

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