Techy zone bill tops agenda as MLAs return to work

| 28/09/2011

(CNS): The law to create Special Economic Zones, designed to facilitate the proposed Cayman Enterprize City where technology related businesses can set up in Cayman under different rules from other commercial entities, will be up for debate as the Legislative Assembly returns this morning (Wednesday 28 September.) Government will also be amending the national pensions law to allow people to remove money to invest in a property, though this bill has not yet been set down for the prescribed 21 days to allow for consultation. Government will also be amending the rules relating to the cinematography board.

Three private members motions are now filed and ready to be debated during this second meeting of this parliament.  Two motions, filed by the independent member for North Side, asking government to reduce the duty on fuel and remove the duty on medicines and medical supplies, carried over from the last meeting are scheduled to make the floor of the assembly.

The opposition has three new motions for this meeting which relate to the issue of rising crime. The first of those motions scheduled to be debated is an amendment to the firearms law and other relevant legislation to allow the general public to carry pepper spray lawfully.

The Legislative Assembly is scheduled to begin at 10am and is open to the public.

See National Pensions Amendment Law here

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  1. Anon says:

    It seems the person meant 'we' as in the Cayman Islands.  That would extend to CEC.  Why do they need to build another commercial property? Which after reading all of this, the answer is for personal profit!  There is nothing presented that shows anything other than the developers are hoping to get this approved and get rich!  What worries me is that the CEO is from Dubai and abandoned the project over there after the deal was approved (and seemingly got his cut) but before the ground broke.  It is important to learn of the past.  History does repeat itself.  This can be found on the Arabian Business News. 

  2. Anonymous says:

    This Economic Zone would create jobs and help Caymanians prosper.  We would be very luck if this gets approved.

    • What kind of idiot are you? says:

      The creation of a law which allows for a new pillar and sector of business to relocate to the Cayman Islands as a jurisdiction would provide the same benefits.  I hope it does not get approved.  I hope that a law is created that provides similar opportunities for Cayman but not with the limitations and restrictions this tech legislation has proposed.

  3. Anonymous says:

    This is the best thing to happen to Cayman and Caymanians this will solve the unemployment issues and our apartments will all be rented, there will be record profits for the supermarkets, stores and every business in Cayman.  This will make Cayman so self sufficient, most of the firms from Wall Street, London, Hong Kong and Singapore will open offices there to take advantage of the no permit fees.  I can just see IBM, Microsoft, Apple, Sysco and all the tech firms moving office here.  This is the greatest idea so far this is a big win for Cayman.  I don't know where it will be located but the real estate around that area will go through the roof, for those people who own land around that area they should immediately begin to invest in apartments because people will need apartments and town home in that area.  I endorse this project.

    • Anonymous says:

      Then what is wrong with Cayman Law saying that Tech companies are allowed these concessions and can come to the Cayman Islands, rather than Tech companies are allowed to come to the SEZ building?

    • Anonymous says:

      I also heard that it prevents male pattern baldness and lessens menstrual cramps.

    • Anonymous says:

      You sound like another employee providing all these promises based on absolutely nothing but emotion.  Attracting technology companies and the like is good for Cayman, that much is true.  This proposal, this legislation and the monopoly of renting from one landlord does not benefit Cayman.  It benefits a few people with a minimal trickle down effect.  Besides the exact same thing can be accomplished without providing a monopoly/exclusive rights on the commercial property for the tenants to rent. Create a new Tech law not a SEZ law.  SEZ is just a catch phrase,a gimmick, snake oil, wool over the eyes.  It sounds sexy. Cayman will have an SEZ. OOOHHHH WOW!!!!  It is meaningless if you really drill down to the important bits.


      The monopoly is the problem.  Monopolies are never good for anyone else besides the people who own the monopoly.  So try again with a better argument.



  4. Anonymous says:

    As someone in the financial services field I just returned from the Middle East. I see lots of emotion but few facts on this thread. Seems to me that tech zone are working all around the world.  Here is one example:

    RAK FREEZONE – 30% growth this year! Imagine Cayman with this economic growth

    "a total of 1068 new companies registered in the January-June period of 2011"

    "achieving a significant 30 per cent year-on-year increase"


    • Anonymous says:

      What part did you visit? Cause the place I visited had empty buildings

    • Anonymous says:

      Gosh that is amazing but I am more interested in the swamp land in Florida that you were selling last week.

    • Please you must think we are idiots says:

      I've read the article and I am still not convinced.  All I read are that they created some laws within a location.  Cayman can do this as a jurisdiction.  Cayman can create some laws that allow for the exact same things.  When the financial industry came about and was developing that is what happened.  Laws were created to facilitate what happened in industry and to attract business.  See the business of Trusts.  Trusts in common law do not allow for reserved powers in any form or it will fail.  In the Cayman Islands a reserved powers trust will not fail.  Why? Because there was a law created which said it was allowed.  It became law therefore the practice of reserved powers became mandated in law. Business flourished.  That is an example of how Cayman as a jurisdiction can do things without limitations.  Now say Cayman wants to  create this new sector of technology, create a law for the entire jurisdiction which is so attractive that they want to come to the Cayman Islands.  It is quite simple.


      According to the article it worked in the middle east, hmmmmm what about all the other countries where it is not working.  Ukraine used to have, they closed theirs in 2005 I believe.  Theirs did not last for very long.  What about Dubai?  They don't have much progress with their zone.  They have a few tenants but it is not booming.  This is all smoke and mirrors.  Cayman does not need to create a 'zone'.  Cayman only needs to ammend and or create a few laws.


  5. Serious says:

    If one wants to formally object to a project proposed on the government table, how does one go about doing so?

    I would like to formally object and not just relay my objects through this forum.  Do I need signatures from the existing commercial property owners?  Do I need to write a letter?  Who is it addressed to? What are the steps that need to be taken.  I want to formally propose that this project is scrapped and instead create a law that makes the Cayman Islands as a whole attractive.

    Can anyone assist me?

    Thank you

    • Serious says:

      Sigh….either no one knows or no one cares….

      It is a serious question.

    • Anonymous says:

      I want to know too!!!!!

    • Anonymous says:

      My suggestion is that you could address a letter to the Premier with copies to each MLA and drop them off at the Government Building. By all means get as many people to sign or do the same thing.

  6. Stupid is as stupid does says:

    If this Tech Zone comes to fruition,  you best believe that a fine tooth comb will follow.  I think this entire project is about politial XXXX.  I will personally make sure that every politician that is involved and every civil servant involved gets investigated.  FOI is a wonderful thing.  The entire project oozes XXXX.  The zone is complete nonsense, I attended the presentations. I listened to the sales pitch and it is only a building just like everyone else has realised.  It is as if people just woke up. 

    The premier involved is already under investigation for other things I don't see why this project is any different.    Put this project under a fine tooth comb people.  It can be a very dangerous thing if it ever is approved.

    As my pen name says "stupid is as stupid does" we have people in charge that have no education that do not know any better and it is difficult to see past their own greediness.  Please Cayman look at this project closely and think objectively about it.  What is wrong with having this open to the entire island?  Why are we allowing this to only be in a few buildings which these developers are building. 



  7. Anonymous says:

    the whole thing smells like a high end scam……..

  8. Anonymous says:

    Neither the financial services pillar nor the tourism pillar were built on the basis that investors could only compete on a level playing field if they rented from a developer who had a "friendly" politician. Shouldn't we follow the idea that we should allow people to develop high tech businesses anywhere on the island if high tech is supposed to become an economic pillar?

  9. Anonymous says:

    Open the entire country to high tech businesses. I don't get what this proposal does other than legislate a path to future corruption.

  10. Anonymous says:

    These comments about the tech-zone shows how lost we are. I have spent 4 months reading up about SEZs and how they positively impact national economies. Why do we Caymanian's always try to recreate the wheel? The SEZ is a great idea. They work. Technology is the future. My family needs work. Lets pull together as a community and support SOMETHING! 

    • JP says:

      Spot on but good luck with that, we are our own worst enemies and no doubt we will botch this opportunity as well. 

    • Anonymous says:

      I support opening up the entire country to high tech businesses not this few get rich quick scheme.

    • Anonymous says:

      Yeah, but the details count. This is a real estate deal. To get the techie benefits you have to rent from the developer at whatever rate he chooses to impose. Can't get the benefits if you don't locate in his building. As usual the politicians do not know what they are doing and the slick developer takes them to the cleaners. All you really have to do is designate the whole airport industrial area a techie zone and let techies come in and rent from anyone they want. But there's no graft available in doing that.

    • Anonymous says:

      Yeah your family needs work.  Well my family's empty commercial buildings need renting.  How about that?!

      It seems that the SEZ is recreating the wheel by creating a 'zone' aka a building which only allows these tech companies to come here and rent from them.   Allowing Cayman laws to be modified to have the same outcome of attracting tech companies will have the same effect as this 'zone' and allows for people like my family and others the opportunity to have these tech companies rent commercial property from us. 

      Think about that one!

      • Anonymous says:

        Try drop your rent to a reasonable rate then – you're not in central London or New York and the reason so many commercial and residential properties are empty comes down to one thing – extrortionate rental rates.

        • Anonymous says:

          Then why are the CEC proposing to build more with exclusive rights to the technology sector?

      • Anonymous says:

        Maybe the price for rental in your families buildings is not competitive ever thought of that..

        • Anonymous says:

          Then why are we building more?

          • Anonymous says:

            If the buildings you own are empty… why ARE you building more?


            • Bangers and Mash says:

              Why is CEC proposing to build more buildings?  Because they are guaranteed to have tenants with the proposed deal!  The tenants that want the benefits can only obtain the benefits if they rent from them!  Otherwise they have to suffer with renting outside of the compound which does not allow them the ridiculous concessions as proposed.

              The current commerical property owners will not be able to compete in this market whatsoever.  It is a deal that excludes them and penalizes them for not having the fancy name 'zone' attached.

      • Truth says:

        For the person who put the thumbs down, you are either one of the 4 Caymanians that make up the 70% of staff that work for CEC as listed in the paper the other day or you don't own or know anyone that owns commerical property.  Either way it is a selfish outlook and if you are Caymanian you should look a the good of Cayman as a whole and not just a skewed version because you and only you and very few others will benefit.

    • BS says:

      You must work for them then.  There is no other reason why someone would seriously read up on SEZs for four months.  Have you researched into the fact that not ALL attempts have worked.  They are SEZs out there that have failed and failed horribly or are just a bunch of beautiful empty buildings.  It is better for the 'zone' not to exist and just create laws that make Cayman attractive to the technology industry similar to what happened with the Financial Industry.

  11. Anonymous says:

    So how much does an exemption from immigration controls sell for? Anybody want to take a wager on which real estate company gets the exclusive listing on this if it goes through – purely by coincidence of course.

  12. Anonymous says:

    This law should not be passed in its present form.  If it is, it will create some serious problems for Cayman. I wonder how many of our L.A. members have read it thoroughly at least three times, and then taken the time to discuss the implications with a lawyer. This is an extremely important piece of legislation and each and every one of our representatives should be very clear as to its consequences, unintended and otherwise.

  13. Anonymous says:

    DO NOT approve the tech zone.  It is only a real estate deal.  The same thing can be accomplished for the entire Cayman Islands by creating a law that allows for the tech companies to come to the Cayman Islands under similarly attractive deals, but not limited to the companies being housed in one building. 

    Allow for the entire population of the Cayman Islands to benefit not just these developers.  As I see it all they have done is drafted a wonderful law for the Cayman Islands.  Let us do what is best for Cayman and expand the law to allow all residents of Cayman to benefit.

    • Anonymous says:

      I agree that this would be much better for the country but how are the politcians supposed to profit if the entire country can benefit?

      • Anonymous says:

        They shouldn't benefit.  If they did it would be considered corruption.  What are those Acts that just passed called?  Actually…maybe this is a good idea for the process, now we can impose these acts and get rid of the politicians that are corrupt!  Use this as an example of their corruption and have them all removed!  Then scrap this idea!  It is complete nonsense. 


    • BoyWonder says:

      How come they have been successul in other countries then? 

      • Anonymous says:

        All of them aren't.  Where the CEO came from in Dubai, it is a bunch of empty buildings.

      • Anonymous says:

        Those ones were industrialized economic zones providing concessions on import/export and labour and if we really look at those models it was based on the exploitation of low wage workers.  I understand that is not what is being suggested, but these scenarios are apples and oranges.  Cayman just doesn't need this SEZ in the form presented.

        Bringing the technology industry is good but not just for the few to gain.  It should be for all to have an opportunity.

      • Anonymous says:

        They haven't been successful in every country that hastried to do it.  The ones that have been successful  are the import/export industrial SEZ.  But again not every place/'country that has tried to do it have been successful.

  14. Anonymous says:

    I don't think this proposal has much to do with technology companies, but there is a simple test to determine what it is. Just add a provision that says that regulated professionals including lawyers, accountants etc., and any entity that is regulated by the Cayman Islands Monetary Authority, and any entity dealing with the government companies and intellectual property registries is not allowed to set up in the so-called techy park. A real technology park developer would not object to that. People seeking to sell "get out of the immigration system cards"  just might.

    • Anonymous says:

      But these concessions apply only to entities within the 'zone' in laymans term the BUILDING!  That is the only difference.  The BUILDING which the developers and only the developers will make a killing off of, what about all the other commercial property outside of the so called 'zone' .  I would hope that DART is putting up a stink about this cause I don't see why he wouldn't want the same benefits too!