The Cayman Islands Investment Bureau’s Hong Kong Office will officially open 15 March.
A delegation from the Cayman Islands will attend the launch next month, said Mr. Dax Basdeo, Executive Director CIIB. The delegation, which Leader of Government Business and Minister for Tourism McKeeva Bush will head up, is being co-ordinated by the Ministry of Tourism.
Caymanian Mr. William Conolly will be in charge of the Hong Kong branch.
The Cayman Islands Investment Bureau was launched in 2003 by the Ministry of Tourism, Environment, Development and Commerce. It was created to encourage investment and manage growth in the Cayman Islands.
Besides the new Hong Kong offices, the Cayman Islands Investment Bureau also has offices here, in New York and London.
‘The importance of overseas offices is well established for investment promotion agencies,’ explained Mr. Basdeo.
‘These offices provide a base from which the direct targeting of beneficial foreign investment can be conducted. With Bureau officers located in jurisdictions with high concentrations of investors it becomes easier to raise awareness and interest that will translate into foreign investment in the Cayman Islands.
‘Offices in Hong Kong and London are therefore ideal given the business interests represented in these locations. The potential benefits of a Hong Kong office can be seen given the level of interest that has been fielded by the London office in the last few months.’
According to a press release from the CIIB, it has reported a sharp increase in the level of interest expressed in investing in the Cayman Islands from European investors since the middle of 2004. Investment interest has come from several diverse fields, including consumer manufacturing, tourism, financial services, real estate, environmental engineering, and software development, said the release.
‘The level of investment interest by reputable investors has not diminished as a result of the passage of Hurricane Ivan,’ said Mr. Basdeo. ‘The main concern of the CIIB is to ensure that the Cayman Islands continue to attract beneficial investment into our jurisdiction, while being mindful of ensuring that local investors have access to any new business opportunities that may arise.’
The majority of the project proposals received by the CIIB have been received through the Bureau’s London Office. While most of these project proposals are only in the preliminary stages of development, the potential investment value of these projects to the Cayman Islands is estimated at over US$20 million. Additionally, these projects could lead to the creation of at least 60 new jobs for Caymanians, the release stated.
‘These results show the benefit of the Investment Bureau’s overseas offices. We hope to continue this success in Europe, but additionally to achieve similar results in stimulating the interest of Asian investors through the upcoming launch of the Bureau’s Hong Kong Office,’ said Mr. Bush.
The Bureau’s London Office facilitates the critical functions of targeting and disseminating information to interested European investors, and is a key point of contact for channelling investor interest into the Cayman Islands. In addition to its marketing and advisory functions, the London Office also promotes the development of strategic relationships with economic development organizations and investment agencies based in Europe. The Bureau’s London Office is represented by Mr. Charles Parchment.
Any queries regarding the services or activities of the Investment Bureau can be directed to Mr. Basdeo at 945-0943.