While the Panama Papers made headlines about the offshore world,
the reality for Jersey was that the work that has been done to
carve ourselves a role as a financial services centre that bases
its reputation and "sales pitch" on the strength and
quality of its regulation is continuing to pay off.
Positive statements about the level of regulation have come from
EU Trade Commissioner Pierre Moscovici, from former Prime Minister
David Cameron and from groups such as Moneyval and ESMA, and there
is recognition, it seems, that our standards meet and often exceed
those of onshore centres.
That work is going to continue – the only way that we can
maintain our reputation is by continuing to strengthen our
regulatory frameworks and apparatus – our "Early
Adopter" status as regards to the Common Reporting Standard is
a good example of that, but the work is constant.
What we have seen in 2016 in response to Panama is a flight to
quality as discerning private clients look to jurisdictions such as
ours because of the high quality of regulation, the reputation of
the courts and the responsive nature of the legislature to the need
to amend existing laws and create new legislation.
On that final point, we are expecting to see amendments to the
trusts law in the coming weeks, and hopefully before too long the
introduction of the remaining elements of the new charities
Whilst it is depressing to see bad reporting of the
"offshore world" in the popular press from time to time,
it is also reassuring to know that the key decision-makers
understand Jersey's position and reputation, and indeed that of
Themes for the year included work for international families
looking for bespoke structures to facilitate succession planning,
asset protection and wealth structuring, particularly out of the
Middle East and parts of the world that have seen instability and
uncertainty. It is positive to see the levels of interest in the
Jersey foundation law in particular.
This article first appeared in Business Brief.
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Now that the United Kingdom has served notice to leave the European Union under Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty, managers of offshore funds have a clearer timetable for when Brexit will happen, with the UK scheduled to leave the EU in March 2019.
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