Political leaders face-off

| 20/01/2009

(CNS): With the election season officially underway, both the leader of the opposition and the leader of government business will be presenting their view of the country’s business outlook at Cayman’s leading business conference this week. McKeeva Bush has  been invited to speak alongside Kurt Tibbetts on how Cayman can reposition itself to thrive in the new global financial landscape at this year’s Cayman Business Outlook.

Delegates will be given an opportunity to interact with both government leaders through a Q&A session at the conclusion of the debate, moderated by Gary Linford, a former head of the Investment & Securities Division of CIMA.  

This year’s conference theme, “Global Crisis: From Disaster to Painful Recovery”,  was a natural given the current situation, organizers said, adding that there was no shortage of top presenters ready to address the CBO delegates on matters pertinent to the crisis.

Presenters will speak to the new Obama administration in the US, the plummeting of global stock markets, collapsed commodity prices, and the economic domino effect of an adjusted consumer mindset. 

This year’s keynote speaker is Charles W. Calomiris, who will address the conference theme and ask what steps the US needs to take to gain control and traction in a slippery economy. Calomiris is the Henry Kaufman Professor of Financial Institutions at the Columbia University Graduate School of Business and a Professor at Columbia’s School of International and Public Affairs. He also serves as the Academic Director of the Chazen Institute of International Business, and of the Center for International Business Economics and Research, at Columbia. Professor Calomiris co-directs the Project on Financial Deregulation at the American Enterprise Institute and is the Arthur Burns Scholar in International Economics at AEI. 

Thomas Mann, the W. Averell Harriman Chair and Senior Fellow in Governance Studies at the Brookings Institution, is a frequent lecturer on American politics and public policy. A regular contributor to newspaper stories, television and radio programs on politics and governance, Mann is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. “Grappling with Recession, Financial Meltdown, and an Ambitious Campaign Agenda: How Will President Obama and the new Democratic Congress Govern?” will be the title of his presentation.

Also speaking at the conference is Todd Buchholz, former Director of Economic Policy at the White House, a managing director of the $15 billion Tiger Hedge Fund, and an award-winning economics teacher at Harvard, will give the presentation:  “Will the Crisis Change US Consumer Behaviour? What are the Implications to the Global Economy?” Buchholz accurately forecasted the 2001 slowdown in the U.S. and has authored numerous books, including Market Shock: 9 Economic and Social Upheavals that Will Shake Our Financial Future, which warned of the quicksand facing the stock market and was raved about by BusinessWeek. 

Barry Ritholtz is the author of the highly anticipated book, Bailout Nation:  How Easy Money Corrupted Wall Street and Shook the World Economy, which is due to be released in January.  Ritholtz is the CEO and Director of Equity Research at FuisonIQ, an online quantitative research firm. 

Local businessman, Scott Elphinstone will address “The New Investment Paradigm – Resetting Value.” He is the co-founding partner of Five Continents Financial Limited, a Cayman Islands based professional services firm.  Elphinstone manages in excess of US$500 million in assets for institutional and private clients.  He has over 19 years experience as a director of listed, regulated and charitable entities, including banks & trust companies, hedge and mutual funds and insurance companies. 

Brett Hill, President and CEO of Fidelity says, “As the global crisis becomes amplified and the community wonders how to prepare for local effects, Fidelity’s organizing committee felt it was important to secure the right individuals who can help give us the management tools to deal with these timely topics.  Through the generous support of our partner sponsors we have been able to once again bring experts and intellectuals to educate, and enlighten our community.”

Cayman Business Outlook takes place on 22 January at the Ritz Carlton.


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