Following our recent article regarding the Cayman Islands delegation, led by Minister of Financial Services & Commerce, The Honourable André Ebanks, MP, visiting Hong Kong and Singapore in efforts to progress long-held plans to open a Cayman Islands Asia office, the Cayman Compass has published and update suggesting that Singapore, rather than Hong Kong is being considered as the preferred location for this new outpost.
As a recap, between the 14th and 20th May, members of the Cayman Islands Government visited both Singapore and Hong Kong to meet with local authorities regarding the logistics and requirements involved in setting up a physical office in one of the two jurisdictions. During the trip, Cayman Islands Minister of Financial Services & Commerce, The Honourable André Ebanks, MP and Cayman Islands Government representative for Asia, Gene DaCosta, met with local officials, agencies and law firms in Singapore, for consideration as an alternative to establishing a Cayman base in Hong Kong.
As reported by The Cayman Compass, Hong Kong has long been considered as the preferred location for The Cayman Islands government to set up its first base in Asia. The city boasts depth in its capital markets and rich history as a global financial centre, which until recently would have made it the prevailing choice to establish a Caymanian presence in the region. However, recent years have seen large numbers of companies, funds and family offices relocate to Singapore, making it an attractive alternative.
As the chosen representative of the Cayman Islands Government in the region, Gene DaCosta has a deep familiarity with both cities and drew parallels between Singapore and Grand Cayman as a “small island nation with a similar climate and residents who have a familiar temperament.”
Plans for the Asia office are progressing well, with projections that the Asia office would be open by the end of the year and reports of DaCosta actively engaging with the Singapore Government and British High Commission.
A concrete final decision is yet to be made, however, regardless of which city is chosen, the move is a necessary one for Cayman to retain its position as the jurisdiction of choice for Asian investment managers and ultra-high-net-worth individuals looking for an offshore solution.