Guernsey is building on its insurance offering in China after signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with a key Chinese business centre.

The MoU between the Beijing Airport Economic Core Zone (BAECZ) and Guernsey Finance, on behalf of the island's finance sector, was signed at a ceremony in Beijing between BAECZ Management Committee Deputy Director Jie Hu and Guernsey Finance Chairman Lyndon Trott.

The agreement sees the parties agree to cooperate in the areas of captive insurance market development, financial innovation and international information exchange to promote the viability of the Chinese captive market and wider communication between China and the global captive industry.

They will also encourage the efforts of Beijing Shunyi to become the regional captive domicile centre of China and support Chinese business in setting up captive insurance companies domestically and internationally.

Mr Trott, who is also Guernsey's Deputy Chief Minister, said he was excited about the opportunities presented by the MoU.

"This MoU further reflects our commitment to build and develop our cross-border communication with China, specifically the Beijing Airport Economic Core Zone - a key hub for China's industrial, business and creative sectors," he said.

"Businesses in this zone are eager to learn the advantages of utilising captive insurance vehicles as opposed to insuring through the commercial market and Guernsey as Europe's number one captive insurance domicile is perfectly placed to assist them with this.

"Captives are going to be at the forefront of innovation in Asia's insurance market and Guernsey is proud to be recognised as a centre of excellence in this area. It has been nearly 10 years since we established our Guernsey representative office in China and this MoU is yet another step forward in Guernsey's development in the region."

The BAECZ at Beijing Capital International Airport was created to boost the city's airport-based economy and features developments in five key sectors: airport transportation and related industries, strategic emerging industries, industrial finance, business services, and culture and creative industries.

Deputy Director Hu said he was honoured to receive a delegation from Guernsey.

"The signing of the agreement shows the close relationship and cooperation in captive insurance that exists between our two jurisdictions," said Mr Hu.

"Based on the knowledge and experience that Guernsey has from more than 50 years' experience as an international finance centre, we are delighted to have such a partner to cooperate with and look forward to working with our friends from Guernsey after the signing."

The BAECZ MoU happened just a day after one was signed between the Guernsey Financial Services Commission and the China Insurance Regulatory Commission, which will enable a flow of information between the regulators to ensure compliance with relevant laws in each jurisdiction, thereby promoting the integrity, efficiency and financial soundness of those doing business between the two places.

Other recent developments involving Guernsey and China's insurance sectors include Guernsey representatives signing MoUs in June 2016 with both the China Captive Alliance and the Kashgar Government. Both agreements set out a statement of intent to facilitate captive insurance market development initiatives between the parties, international communication, financial innovation and information sharing.

The last six months has also seen three Chinese delegations visit Guernsey in order to better understand the island's full range of specialist insurance, fund, private wealth and asset management products.

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