CIMA stays put as civil servants move to new office

| 14/03/2011

(CNS): Following recent announcements that the Cayman Islands Monetary Authority will not be moving into the government’s new office accommodation building, as was originally planned, in order to preserve the authority’s autonomy from government, the managing director said last week that it won’t be moving elsewhere. Cindy Scotland told CNS via e-mail that CIMA has no plans to move to a different location and that it will be staying in its current offices. Although offices on the third floor in the new government building on Elgin Avenue had been earmarked for CIMA’s more than 200 workers and especially fitted for the regulator, the authority made representations to government that the need to demonstrate its independence would mean it should not move there.

The authority has stated that it “will eventually have to move”, although it will be remaining at its current Elizabethan Square location for the time being. “At this time, the Authority has not made plans for another arrangement at a different location,” Scotland told CNS by email.

The move by the bulk of civil servants from the Glass House and other rented accommodation around George Town into the new government office accommodation has been delayed a number of times, despite the fact that the building has been completed for some time, and the move was scheduled for January.

Officials recently stated that government workers should be in the new building by the end of March. It will be home to 29 different government departments, including the Governor’s Office, which is currently in the building on Smith Road, and the Premier’s Office, which is presently in the Glass House.

The new building, which has LEED certification and is being described as a “green building” as a result of the design being energy efficient, cost around $85 million to build but it is expected to save government more than $10 milllion per year in rental costs.

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Comments (9)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Custom fitted? Didn’t they spend millions on putting in a vault just for CIMA?  Now who will occupy that space among a solely Government offices- a private bank? There’s a lot missing to this story in regards to the cause and affect of a simple ‘conflict of interest.’  Minor oversight by just a few in charge, I guess.  FOI?

  2. tim ridley says:

    It is also noteworthy that, following Dr Coats resignation at the end of 2010, there is nowone sole remaining overseas Director of CIMA, down from a high of 4 a few years ago. This may well save on expenses, but does little or nothing for CIMA’s independence or international credibility.

    • Anonymous says:

      Agreed, but do you actually believe that this even registers in the consciousness of those who appoint? It will be interesting to see how many new conflicts of interest will be achieved through the appointment of a director to replace Dr. Coats.

  3. Reality 101 says:

    I second that motion

  4. Anonymous says:

    This would be funny were it not such a serious issue.

    How gullible do the powers that be think the public is? If you want to preserve the autonomy of a regulator from government it doesn’t matter in the slightest where the physical office of that regulator is situated.

    What DOES matter however is whether the man aka politician in charge stacks the board of such regulator with his psychophants and makes other board appointments not based on qulaifications but on political considerations.

    • Anonymous says:

       If only the world was as simple as you make it out to be.  I wouldn’t be so quick to downplay the importance of physical location.  Cayman has no shortage of international detractors.  If they can’t find anything else to blame let’s not hand them our heads on a platter by sandwiching CIMA in the middle of Government Ministries in the new building.  

      Remember, it’s hard to define yet prove political interference- so if they can’t get Cayman on that, then they will be sure to decry the fact that our regulator is one floor or two below the political Minister.

      Then what will all you pundits have to say- I bet you won’t hear one of you come to the defense of CIMA then.  You will all be saying heads should roll for whoever decided to put them in the building.

      Let’s stop the double speak.

    • Anonymous says:

      Absolutely right. It would also be interesting to find out how the powers that be can claim to be interested in the perceived independence of CIMA when CIMA directors and senior employees are appointed to act on behalf of the government in negotiating international agreements that don’t relate to CIMA activities, as has been reported in the media lately.

  5. Anonymous says:

    I guarantee that no-one will be moved in by the end of march!