The signing of a Memorandum of Understanding establishing bilateral ties between the Cayman Islands Monetary Authority and the Dubai Financial Services Authority has been one of the highlights of Premier McKeeva Bush’s current overseas travels.
Speaking Thursday from Dubai, where he is making a state visit, Mr. Bush said the Memorandum of Understanding had been in the making since his trip there in December 2009. “The MOU with DFSA reinforces the regulator-to-regulator cooperation which the government of the Cayman Islands fully supports,” said Mr. Bush. “As I have previously stated, there are many synergies between our jurisdictions and I am proud to have been able to be an integral part of this solidification in our ongoing relationship with Dubai,”
CIMA Managing Director Cindy Scotland signed the Memorandum of Understanding along with Chief Executive Paul Koster of Dubai Financial Services Authority, the independent regulator of all financial and ancillary services conducted through the Dubai International Financial Centre. This agreement will govern cooperation and the exchange of information between the organisations, something that had already been taking place on an informal basis.
Mrs. Scotland said CIMA saw the Memorandum of Understanding reinforcing Cayman’s strong international cooperation regime.
“This MOU will create a framework that will facilitate greater assistance between us – the regulators of financial services in Cayman and Dubai – with regard to effectively carrying out our duties,” she said.
Cayman Enterprise City
In addition to his meetings with the Dubai Financial Services Authority, Mr. Bush accompanied a delegation from Cayman Enterprise City – the proposed technology-based Special Economic Zone for Grand Cayman – in meetings with United Arab Emirates officials.
Barry Hon, the chairman of Cayman Enterprise City developer Hon Developments, said beforehand that the visit to the United Arab Emirates was “enormously important to Cayman and the CEC project”.
“One of our primary objectives is to forge relationships with key SEZ stakeholders in the UAE, and communicate the advantages to companies who establish a presence in CEC,” he said last week. “Cayman will also benefit greatly from the exchange of information gleaned from this trip.”
Cayman Enterprise City CEO Jason Blick echoed Mr. Hon’s comments before the trip.
“Having the Premier personally reach out to high ranking officials in UAE is an indication of just how dedicated we all are to making Cayman Enterprise City a reality,” he said. “Partnerships with successfully established SEZs such as those within the UAE are crucial to CEC’s success.”
On Thursday, Mr. Bush said the trip had been very successful in terms of the Cayman Enterprise City project.
“My job is to help any developer, particularly one as credible as the Hons,” he said. “My role was to support the developer; to say this company is a credible company and one that the Cayman Islands supports. This means a lot for our country.”
As part of the visit, Mr. Bush toured the Special Economic Zones in Dubai and he came away from the tours excited about the prospects for Cayman.
“This will mean a tremendous development for our country,” he said. “We’ve been talking for years about diversifying our economy.
“We have hundreds of students coming out of school every year and we need to diversify our economy so they can find jobs. That’s what the Cayman Enterprise City will offer us.”
Mr. Bush said he thinks Cayman Enterprise City will be “as important in terms of employment” as the proposed Dr. Devi Shetty hospital project.
This trip off island for Mr. Bush started with a visit to Washington, DC, where he discussed the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act with officials from the US Department of Treasury and the Internal Revenue Service.
He then flew to Italy to meet with the president of GLF Construction – known as Grandi Lavori Fincosit SpA in Italy – the company with which the Port Authority has signed a framework agreement to build two cruise ship berthing piers.
Mr. Bush, who will return to Cayman this weekend, said the meetings with GLF went well and that he expected to make a further announcement about the cruise berthing project in the early part of April.
As part of his ongoing series of public meetings, Mr. Bush said he’d be providing updates on his trip during a public meeting in North Side on 11 April.
“Having the Premier personally reach out to high ranking officials in UAE is an indication of just how dedicated we all are to making Cayman Enterprise City a reality.” – Jason Blick, CEO, Cayman Enterprise City