Chairman of the BVI Finance Limited Kenneth Morgan said stakeholders in the financial services industry must move away from core business incorporation – an area in which the British Virgin Islands (BVI) has been hugely successful for several years.
“We have to move away from the core incorporation business that’s been so successful over the years into a wider range of services,” he said, adding that the wider range of services include trusts, accounting, legal services, insolvency, and the arbitration centre that he described as a jewel in the crown.
Business development, Morgan emphasized, is a central pillar in the future of financial services.
He added, “It is in everybody’s interest that we market the Territory effectively, and that we focus on the areas of business development that we need to in order to make sure the BVI is successful and continues to provide the great opportunities for jobs, for businesses, for BVIslanders to work in the industry. All of that requires the industry to be buoyant and successful.”
While noting that the BVI is very competitive in the marketplace, Morgan stated that industry stakeholders should work on the products the marketplace needs.
Private sector involvement
The BVI Finance chairman, along with Premier Dr D Orlando Smith, expressed confidence that the new level of private sector involvement will help the BVI increase its competitiveness as a financial services jurisdiction.
They also share the sentiment that Government has demonstrated immense faith in the private sector, and the private sector in turn welcomes the opportunity to play a more direct role in marketing and promoting the industry.
In that same breath, Premier Smith noted the recent transition of BVI Finance from a government department to a private company with direct responsibility for marketing and promotion.
“Government is basically a facilitator. We create the legislative framework for the business and it is up to the industry to move it forward. A close working relationship between the Government and the industry is essential if we are going to develop new products,” added Premier Smith, who also is the Territory’s minister of finance.
He, during a BVI Forward TV programme last evening, noted that the idea for new products in financial services would most likely come from the industry members who are out in the field and would see the needs of their clients.
Those industry members should then present their observations to Government, which would in turn develop the legislation that would result in new products for the industry to sell.
“It’s an exciting period for financial services,” the premier said, adding that this can only be good for the BVI as it moves to expand its economy.
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