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Premier invited to Chatham House, HARDtalk

Premier Alden McLaughlin, MBE, JP, MLA-1GRAND CAYMAN, Cayman Islands – Premier Hon. Alden McLaughlin will depart from the Cayman Islands on Friday, 31 January, 2014, for London to deliver one of only two Keynote Addresses at a Chatham House Conference on corruption.

The title of the conference is ‘Combatting Global Corruption: Shared Standards and Common Practice’ and will be held on Monday and Tuesday, 3-4 February, 2014.

This conference will examine the prospects for concerted action to tackle global corruption and consider the role of governments and businesses in achieving lasting impact. Participants and speakers will critically assess current and emerging international efforts and consider their consequences for future business practice and governance.

Chatham House is a world-leading source of independent analysis, informed debate and influential ideas on how to build a prosperous and secure world for all. The institute engages governments, the private sector, civil society and its members in open debates and confidential discussions about significant developments in international affairs; produces independent and rigorous analysis of critical global, regional and country-specific challenges and opportunities; and offers new ideas to decision-makers and -shapers on how these could best be tackled from the near- to the long-term.

On Tuesday, Mr. McLaughlin will address Session Five of the Conference, ‘Recovering the Proceeds of Corruption’.

Other Keynote Speakers include Angel Gurria, Secretary General for the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development; Dr. Mo Ibrahim, Founder and Chair of the Mo Ibrahim Foundation; and Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Minister of Finance, Nigeria.

He said he is delighted to accept the Chatham House invitation and for the opportunity to tell the world of the successes of the Cayman Islands on the global financial stage.

“It’s rare that a leader of a UK Territory has the opportunity to address anti-corruption initiatives from a global perspective,” the Premier said.

While in London, Mr. McLaughlin will also appear on a segment of BBC’s HARDtalk, which provides in-depth interviews with hard-hitting questions from host Stephen Sackur. His appearance there is also by invitation.

Mr. McLaughlin said he is humbled to have been asked to appear on HARDtalk to tell not only Cayman’s story, but that of the other Overseas Territories.

“It’s a pretty big stage,” he said. “It’s my honour to represent the Cayman Islands and the Overseas Territories. We all have a good story to tell,” he said. “As far as we are aware, this will be the first appearance of a leader from an Overseas Territory to appear on HARDtalk.”

Topics to be discussed include Cayman’s status as an International Finance Centre, the use of the term “tax haven”, international efforts to curb tax avoidance, banking regulation in the Cayman Islands and about reported recent tensions between Caymanians and the expat community.

The show will be taped on Tuesday. It is not yet known when it will air on BBC.

While in London, the Premier also plans to meet with officials from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.

Travelling with the Premier will be Cabinet Secretary Samuel Rose and Senior Political Advisor Roy Tatum.

Deputy Premier Hon. Moses Kirkconnell will become Acting Premier and Robert Lewis will act as Cabinet Secretary in the absence of Mr. McLaughlin and Mr. Rose.


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