PACT presses ahead with Asia office

| 14/09/2023 | 41 Comments
Minister André Ebanks (from social media)

(CNS): The establishment of a Cayman Islands Government office in Singapore has been approved by Cabinet. The office, which will be headed by Gene DaCosta as the CIG’s overseas representative to Asia, is expected to be open for business well before the end of the year after the administrative details have been completed.

Minister for Financial Services and Commerce André Ebanks said the office will encourage effective communication between the Cayman Islands and key countries in Asia as well as advance Cayman’s interests and reputation.

“The office will enhance the business development efforts of the Cayman Islands’ financial services industry in the region and better capitalise on the many new business opportunities for the Cayman Islands that the Asian region has to offer,” Ebanks said as he announced the decision to press ahead with the office. “Singapore provides a relatively neutral position in the region, with very good flight connections from which to launch business development efforts across Asia.”

He also noted that Singapore also has a strong concentration of financial services firms and a thriving maritime centre.

As he prepares to take up his new position, DaCosta said the Asia office would maintain strategic relationships in jurisdictions such as Hong Kong.

“Having the office based in Singapore allows the Cayman Islands Government the ability to quickly and effectively provide the necessary support our stakeholders in the region may require from time to time,” he said. “Hong Kong is a particularly important locale for us as it has longstanding, strong business relationships to Cayman. I’m expecting to have frequent in-person meetings in Hong Kong, likely quarterly visits at a minimum, alongside those that will occur in Singapore and other jurisdictions in Asia.”

The CIG has had an overseas office in London for many years and opened one in Washington DC last December. Chris Duggan, who heads up the DC office, said his engagements had already yielded governmental and private sector connections.

“We’ve implemented an extensive public and private sector engagement plan that has been successful in establishing and developing relationships with relevant congressional committees in DC, as well as in strengthening ties with relevant stakeholders within a number of key United States Government departments and agencies,” he said.

“The minister, as part of his ongoing commitment to this mission, plans to travel again to Washington later this year to meet with key personnel from within these agencies and engage with key private sector stakeholders.”

After the 2021 elections, Ebanks re-examined the previous government’s decision to open more government offices, In addition, a controversial review by the auditor general made public in January 2022 raised serious concerns about how the PPM-led administration had handled the establishment of these outposts, indicating that the law had been broken.

In July 2021, Ebanks said that the government was going to rethink the approach to the offices. But following the approval of Cabinet to open the Asia office, he said the considered approach to establishing overseas offices would continue to underpin the strong links between Cayman and key business regions.

“As they cultivate their operations, the offices shall promote our country’s interests, initiatives and support, where appropriate, Caymanians residing overseas in these respective regions,” Ebanks said.

Following the announcement, Cayman Finance CEO Steve McIntosh said it was extremely significant and welcome news.

“Over the last decade, Asia has become an increasingly important market for many of our world class financial products and service providers, representing more than a trillion US dollars under management and US$450 billion of portfolio assets in the funds sector alone,” he said. “We congratulate Mr Gene Da Costa and look forward to working closely with him in our work protecting and promoting the Cayman Islands financial sector.”

Share your vote!

How do you feel after reading this?
  • Fascinated
  • Happy
  • Sad
  • Angry
  • Bored
  • Afraid
Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Tags: , , , , ,

Category: Government Finance, Politics

Comments (41)

Trackback URL | Comments RSS Feed

  1. anonymous says:

    So in one breath Panton says expenses need to be cut and in the other breath the civil servants are lining up to book their $19,000 business class tickets to Singapore (yes that is the average cost) for a 30 hour trip they are not flying economy.
    Keeping the PACT government together ( although i understand it is hanging by a thread) is expensive. So expensive in fact that he now need to get the borrowing limits increased. PLEEEEESEEE do not let these jokers put his country deeper in debt. They have nothing to show for $300 million emergency loan that they have already spent

  2. Anonymous says:

    You’re insane to think that Cayman can compete with Asian efficiency. They are going to make a fool of you.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Something pretty greasy is being served up here especially after reading this article by CNS that they linked above.

    Ebanks about turn after such a staunch stance of retracting the PPMs unlawful fiasco stinks. Seems like a culmination of favours and maybe possible legal action from those that ‘sold up’ and were promised positions abroad. Ebanks seems to perhaps be back peddling on what might have been a hasty PACT f*** up for a few minutes of gloating glory at the expense of the PPM.

    Ps – both these parties define; – no it’s not a pleasant ending 🤬

  4. Anonymous says:

    Makes “total sense” – more overpriced travel for meaningless PR – meanwhile the majority of our local population can’t afford a piece of land, and who has land can’t afford to pay their their bills. Kids getting piss poor education, and can’t get jobs when they’re done. But hey, carry on….

  5. Anonymous says:

    Just when I was thinking Andre was smarter than the other pact members.

  6. anon says:

    Great move.

    I hope this Asia office ends up fruitful for our Islands.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Cowboy Kenny soon announce direct CAL flights to Asia

  8. Anonymous says:

    The Govt office in Little Cayman is a 2×4 wooden shack. But our boys going to set up an office in Singapore.

    Always got plenty money to spend. On what they want to spend it on.

  9. Anonymous says:

    It’s never about whether we should build the troughs or not, it’s always about who gets to the head of the line when the feed goes in.

  10. Anonymous says:

    Caymanians reinventing the wheel once again. Except they can’t, don’t and never have.

    Everything they do is a second hand, pre owned USA leftover.

    License plates, garbage trucks, dump trucks, fast food places, road signs and on and on.

    Adopt EU standards entirely, or adopt US standards. Pick one and stick with it.

    Instead we have this half baked crap because our politicians have no brain cells between them and zero leadership skills.

    • Anonymous says:

      …yet your presence here indicates that, despite all you’ve stated, Cayman is *still* indubitably superior to your other options. We appreciate the compliment! 🤗

    • Anonymous says:

      What on earth has the EU got to do with anything?

  11. Anonymous says:

    If you think housing prices are bad now…wait until you open Cayman to Asia. anyone from Canada or Australia will vouch

    • Anonymous says:

      Chinese nationals in particular are buying up land globally. It was a real problem in Canada but I believe Trudeau banned it. Love him or hate him Desantis has put a similar ban in Florida. PACT needs to tread carefully. It’s difficult enough for Caymanians to buy houses in our own country. Let’s not open up avenues to make things worse.

    • Anonymous says:

      We can always give them duty free concessions!

  12. Anonymous says:

    Yeah. Let’s stop growing the civil service and cut spending. Let’s own an office in Singapore instead 🤣

    The private sector already has local representation and clients contacts in Singapore to Elmore the financial services sector. Adding a CIG office adds precisely zero value, ther than establishing some very well paid and enormously expensed jobs for a favoured few.

  13. Anonymous says:

    ‘as well as advance Cayman’s interests and reputation.’

    Shouldn’t we be trying to deliver some of that at home first ?

  14. Anonymous says:

    Interesting. Nice job for Gene, first cousin to the Premier’s wife. Just sayin …

    • Anonymous says:

      In fairness, he was appointed by the last lot.

    • Anonymous says:

      This just in: Shocking revelation on CNS today when someone found out that many Caymanians are related. More at 11!

    • Anonymous says:

      8.20….To be fair, it could be worse…. It might have been Woody.!

    • Check up says:

      In fairness he previously spent several years in Hong Kong while working at an international law firm and he knows the region well.
      I understand the right to question the choices but if the ministry had included more facts, it would reduce these questions.
      As for the relative part, that’s half of Cayman, not to mention he was an inherited choice by this administration.

  15. Anonymous says:

    How much does it cost to build the railway network for this gravy train?

  16. Anonymous says:

    Who is heading up Brussels?

  17. Anonymous says:

    Wayne budget cuts really biting…..zzzzzzz

  18. Anonymous says:

    It would be more impressive if he had gotten Singapore to open a Cayman office.

  19. Anonymous says:

    More expensive luxury foreign holidays for our representatives at our expense. Nothing else.

  20. Anonymous says:

    Convenient that it is a relative of Panton’s wife to head up the office…

  21. Anonymous says:

    What “stakeholders” do we have in Asian countries that we need a whole office over there? Something stinks…


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.