UK trip still in question

| 05/06/2013

david-cameron-delivers-a-speech-outside-downing-street-regarding-libya-situation-pic-getty-images-456630520 (247x300).jpg(CNS): Although the UK prime minister has written to the leaders of British overseas territories and crown dependencies, calling them to a meeting ahead of the G8 summit to discuss the issue of tax avoidance, the Cayman Islands Premier said Thursday that there may not be any need for a delegation to go to the UK after all. Alden McLaughlin said the trip, which would be around the 15 June, has not yet been fixed as the government has been in talks with UK officials and “things were changing all the time”. The recent mounting pressure from the UK and the onshore world generally is a priority for the new government, but with Cayman already committed to automatic exchange, the UK may stop short of further demands.

Speaking at Thursday’s press briefing to announce the finalisation of the new ministries, the premier stated that the trip to the UK was still not certain.

McLaughlin has also expressed a desire to meet with Mark Simmonds as soon as possible to discuss with the FCO minister the current three year budget plan and the need to negotiate some breathing room for the local economy, as Simmonds had given early indications he was willing to talk with the new premier. However, McLaughlin stated that the issues regarding the G8 situation remained “up in the air” and he hoped to have something more definitive to say about what was happening, but said it had been “a challenging past three days”.

Tax avoidance is the central theme of the UK’s chairmanship of the G8 summit, which will take place in Northern Ireland on 17 and 18 June. Prime Minister David Cameron is aware that he cannot be a credible chair if he is not seen to be addressing Britain's own house, which includes the crown dependencies and the OTs, when it comes to tax transparency.

How much more pressure will be put to bear on Cayman and other jurisdictions is not yet known. The UK has already welcomed the commitment that Cayman made to enter into a FACTA-style agreement with Britain under the previous interim administration, and the former premier Juliana O’Connor-Connolly also wrote to Cameron in late April agreeing to sign up to the EU multilateral exchange pilot.

Cameron and Nick Clegg, Deputy Prime Minister and Leader of the Liberal Democrats, plan to host a tax and transparency conference on the weekend before the G8 summit itself and it is this meeting that Cayman’s leader and other OT heads have beencalled to if it goes ahead. According to UK sources, Cameron is looking at the possibility of the territories signing the OECD convention in the cabinet room but the plan could still collapse.

Wanting to "knock down the walls of company secrecy" to reveal who really owns and controls firms, according to the correspondence he sent to the territories, the issue remains sensitive as Cayman and other OTs see the mounting onslaught as an attack on their economic survival when they believe they already have better protections and regulations than many onshore jurisdictions.

Ironically, more regulation will increase Cayman’s costs at a time when the UK remains concerned about its contingent liabilities for this and other dependent jurisdictions and is clamping down on how much local governments spend.

Related articles:

Premier summoned to UK (CNS Business, 29 May 2013)

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  1. Julie from the Block says:

    No worries our righteous Sista  and her driver already handed erryting over?? There is absolutely nothing to discuss, from here on in our financial industry has been completely demolished. Cayman's D Day has come and gone rather quietly! Not a whisper from those who did it either eh !

  2. Anonymous says:

    Mr Premier, whilst all other OT's start to crumble to UK pressure to start taxing, would suggest Cayman goes a different way. I would suggest that Cayman agrees to total transparency and that any other government that asks will be provided with full details of the private and business activities of citizens of that nation. That is what they claim they want, and these days there is no escaping it.


    Imposing taxes is not the answer…leave us a competitive edge..even if it is more in name that reality…

  3. Just a Simple Caymanian says:

    Stand your Ground Alden, I did not vote for you … but I am sure becoming a fan .I am very pleased with your performance thus far, I am not a Party suporter just so you know but I do like what I have seen so far this time around with the PPM. But ……. its just a few days, lets wait and see what going on a couple of years down the road before I throw my full support behind any Party.


    But for now keep up the good works, and level headed approach you are taking it is working for you and your Party


    God Bless

  4. Anonymous says:

    Wonder (if they do go) it'll be first class or sluming it in business?

    • Anonymous says:

      There is not a first class cabin on the BA flight.  They should at least keep the money within the national flag carrying airline.

      • Cayman Mama says:

        Pardon? Cayman Airways does not fly to Britain!

        • Anonymous says:

          Cayman is not a national airline.  It is a local regional airline.  Not being a country and all.

          • Anonymouse says:

            Oh give it a rest. You should look up the first definition of "nation": "a large body of people united by common descent, culture or language, inhabiting a particular state OR TERRITORY". And please try not to nitpick about "large". That qualifier is only there is to distinguish "nation" from "family".  Tens of thousands is large for this purpose.  

            And another thing, Cayman is not a region of the UK. It is an overseas territory of the UK.

            Cayman Airways IS a NATIONAL airline. We have a NATIONAL Security Council etc. etc.

          • Anonymouse says:

            So why does Cayman not come under the UK Home Office rather than the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in that case?

  5. Albert says:

    Your time has come. Better get those all inclusive hotels and cruise berthing piers up and running. You wouldn't give us the vote, you wouldn't let our partners work, you gave us time limits even though we gave you the chance to live, work, vote and claim benefits….it all adds up to no loyalty when it all goes wrong ! Bye.

  6. Anonymous says:

    FACTA style agreement will be in place this year.  The G-8 isn't getting together to allow tax havens any breathing space.  This is not business as usual in Cayman no more.  The UK is under considerable pressure and as the saying goes – stuff rolls down hill.  The Cayman Islands will be obligated to implement FATCA-style -PERIOD!!!!!  No negotiating, no holding off on implementation.  You heard it here first.  FATCA is here to stay.   The European/American money will move to independent territories – which is already happening..Sign Me, Not the bearer of bad news, just being realistic.

    • SSM345 says:

      21:45, I assume you have read about this and undertsnad it all?

      Everywhere with a financial industry is signed up or signing up to FATCA and AIFMD, there is no choice in the matter apart from what Agreement your countrychooses to enter, Model 1 or 2.


      • Anonymous says:

        Glad at least one other person out there understands the realities of what will be transpiring in the upcoming months.

  7. Bracker living on Cutthroat Island says:

    Well JuJu sure has put a number on all of us hasn't she and some have gone and given her absolute immunity and protection as our dear speaker wow! you go girl theEU must really love you eh! I case some of you blind followers don't get it why go to a meeting to discuss what you have already given away. My question is what does our dearly beloved Madam speaker know about finance when all she did was spend ur money on paving roads. 

  8. Anonymous says:

    I hope Alden isn’t dragging his feet on these important matters. This isn’t a bar room matter.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Send Dirty Willie. He needs to get out and stretch his legs.

  10. Anon says:

    Quote from Private Eye (not a fan of tax evasion or avoidance) issue 1340 page 24: 

    "Private Eye's investigation shows that when it comes to facilitating international crime, the offshore world is not the core problem. The trouble lies far closer to home. Last month David Cameron said as part of his G8 presidency: "We must break through the walls of corporate secrecy {which is} fuelling corruption across the world".

    Nowhere are those walls thicker than in Britain. Epic levels of money laundering, illicit arms dealing, frauds, counterfeiting and government corruption are the result, all thriving on emasculated British company law and political and official indifference. A clean up is indeed badly needed. Right here and right now." (end of quote).

    Alden and Wayne: I am a Brit. Don't let them browbeat you and attempt to pass off, for easy political consumption in Europe, all this evasion/avoidance stuff on to non domestic entities like Cayman. Let them know that you know what their cynical game plan is. 

    • Anonymous says:

      hahaha me loving this already…….. let the music being and boys and girls dance to your daddy !!