World media turns attention to Cayman

| 26/03/2009

(CNS): With the G20 summit only one week away, the Portfolio of Finance is gearing up to meet the international press. According to a memo, the government has been notified that a few international broadcast media organisations have contacted the office regarding their intention to arrive in the Cayman Islands this week and next, to prepare stories on the upcoming April 2 G-20 Summit in London. Warning of the probability of unscheduled visits by these global news hounds, the portfolio is advising members of the financial services sector to, “remain calm and pleasant.”

The memo, written by the Public Relations Unit Director Ted Bravakis, indicates that the members of the press have stated that the focus of these visits is to get reaction from the Cayman Islands on the G-20 agenda in relation to offshore financial centres (OFCs).  To that end and as part of government’s media policy towards international journalists, the PR Unit is assisting by coordinating government statements about regulation, cooperation and transparency of the Cayman Islands, as well as providing general background information/orientation about the industry,” it reads.

He did not say which news organisations would be coming but warned that the press will more than likely visit private offices with camera crews and journalists as well. Bravakis noted that the private sector firms must individually decide whether or not to speak to media. For those that do the PR Unit has offered some timely advice and guidelines to consider which may help avoid “surprise” or uncomfortable encounters:

Bravakis says remain calm and pleasant not to put ones hands over ones face, push cameras away or make physically aggressive movements. 

He warns too of concealed cameras or recording equipment left running when the interview has ended and advises people to assume the camera is on at all times.

Cameras may be small, home camcorder-type devices or even mobile telephones,” he said.

Bravakis also advises how to avoid getting caught off guard and to use what he described as bridging statements in response to inquiries: “We are not in a position to meet right now, but would be happy to take down your questions and get back to you with answers,” which can then be provided in writing.  It’s OK to repeat this sentiment – ideally, varying the phrasing: “I’m not the best person for this topic but…” the memo says.

Bravakis, however, also notes that media exposure can also be a positive thing and said if there are any  members of the private sector who wish to know more about any on-island international media opportunities to contact the unit.

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Comments (7)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Mr. Bravakis has provided prudent and sound advice during what is a critical time for media exposure of  the financial sector of the Cayman Islands. This is not the time to bury our heads in the sand, but time for us to showcase the progressive financial benefits our country has to offer.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Mr Bravakis has made Cayman sound like a secret society with these comments.

    As the first poster says, it sounds as though we have something to hide here in Cayman. We should openly engage with the journalists to show them that Cayman is a legitimate jurisdiction for financial services and actually has tougher anti-money landering laws than most western countries.

    The reaction his statements advises will make us look like we’ve got suitcases full of drugs and money hidden in the government buildings.

     

    • Anonymous says:

      Mr. Bravakis advice is sound and very professional.  He has the experience so trust his judgement. Even when one is innocent and has nothing to hide, when you are dealing with the press they can be cunning, and will make you appear like you do. 

    • Afraid to strap on a pair also says:

      Wake up!  The Cayman Islands are living under a reign of terror.  When the economic tide goes out and the scum is finally revealed on the beach  I’ll sign my name to my comments.  Until then, my name is Afraid to Strap on a Pair Also.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Wow, Cayman has a PR Unit… who knew?!?

    • Anonymous says:

      "Cayman has a PR unit…who knew?!?

       No, Cayman has several PR units scattered throughout the civil service (not including GIS) but no one ever sees the result of their "work". Cayman also has a "Protocol Office"-did you know that? What does it do? Who knows-it’s a place to dump people who can’t perform elsewhere probably. And what does the London Office do? The representative there gets almost $150000 a year. For what? Who knows? It certainly hasn’t helped our image with UK Pime Minister Gordon Brown and his cronies who want to close us down. Friends in the know say this is a cocktail party post in London. Well we can’t afford that or Protocol Offices (I mean, really!) or a 30 man Government Information Services (GIS) anymore.

  4. Sounds like these people have something to hide!