September 24, 2017

Cayman Islands: Strategic talks continue in London

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– Talks continued in London Thursday with Premier Hon. Alden McLaughlin, Finance and Economic Development Minister Hon. Roy McTaggart and Minister for and Home Affairs Hon. Tara Rivers meeting with Miriam Sachak, head of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office’s Economics and Financial team.

Minister McTaggart provided an update of the Cayman Islands Government’s financial position through to June 2017 as well as projections for the remainder of the financial year. Other matters discussed were Cayman’s plans to continue paying down debt and Government’s commitment to continue the policy of the last Progressives-led Administration of no new borrowing during the term.  Ms Rivers provided an update on Financial Services matters.

Also discussed were Government’s infrastructure development plans, including progress and challenges, as well as the process for the upcoming Strategic Policy Statement and budget preparation. This next budget will be the first two-year financial plan under revisions to the Public Management and Finance Law.

Minister McTaggart noted that United Kingdom officials continue to applaud the ongoing management of Government’s finances and government’s conduct of the country’s financial affairs.

In the afternoon Premier McLaughlin, Minister McTaggart, and Minister Rivers had a bilateral meeting with , Minister for the overseas Territories at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.  Matters discussed included national security, in particular Government’s plans to create a national border protection agency with the ’s assistance. Financial service matters discussed included the exchange of Beneficial Ownership information with the United Kingdom and the EU’s screening process for non-cooperative jurisdictions.

The recent Cayman Islands election was discussed as were the challenges and opportunities of operating a coalition government. The Premier highlighted the importance of the UK’s continuing support of the Cayman Islands and all Overseas Territories now and post-Brexit. This was also highlighted separately at the special Joint Ministerial Council for Exiting the European Union meeting on Wednesday.

 It is expected that Premier McLaughlin will meet with Lord Ahmad again in November when OT leaders meet in London for the Joint Ministerial Conference and ongoing discussions about Brexit.

 Throughout the day Minister Rivers and Chief Officer Dr. Dax Basdeo had other meetings with business entities in London; details of which will be provided through the Ministry of Financial services.

Also travelling with the Premier are Cabinet Secretary Samuel Rose, Senior Political Advisor to the Premier Roy Tatum and Jason Webster, Policy Analyst in the Cabinet Office.

They return to the Cayman Islands on Sunday, 16 July, 2017.

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