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Region should lead on FS regulation, workshop finds

At a workshop held in Curaçao at the beginning of the month, industry leaders have called for the Caribbean region to take ownership of regulatory issues affecting the international financial services sector. Pictured: Donville Inniss, Minister of Industry, International Business, Commerce and Small Business Development of Barbados addresses the Caribbean Banking and the Caribbean International Financial Services Sector workshop. (Photo courtesy Caribbean Export)

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TheBahamasInvestor.com
Wednesday, October 28, 2015
Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Industry leaders have called for the Caribbean region to take ownership of regulatory issues affecting the international financial services sector.


Leaders also called for stakeholders in the sector to start using their high level of expertise and the diaspora community with their vast international connections to lobby and convince international regulatory institutions of the importance of the sector for the regional economies. To change the focus from reactive to proactive, a regional secretariat should be established that advocates and formulates policies for the region.

These were the key points resulting from a Caribbean Banking and the Caribbean International Financial Services Sector workshop, which was held in Curaçao September 30-October 1, 2015, hosted by the Caribbean Export Development Agency (Caribbean Export) in conjunction with Caribbean-Central American Action (CCAA).

The workshop acted as a precursor to the Global Forum of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), scheduled to take place in Bridgetown, Barbados on 29-30 October 2015.

“We usually sit and wait for others to make the decisions for us,” said Donville Inniss, Minister of Industry, International Business, Commerce and Small Business Development of Barbados. “We only answer when we are asked a question, and even then we answer late.”

Minister Inniss said: “We have to build regional partnerships and identify issues and solutions long before international entities ask us any questions. We must start sending the message that we are knowledgeable, responsible and engaged.”

Prime Minister Perry Christie has been in emergency talks with representatives of key Chinese stakeholders over the future of the bankrupt Baha Mar megaresort on Cable Beach. The Prime Minister said he felt optimistic following the talks, despite recent redundancies at the resort. The talks come as hotel operator SLS has pledged its commitment to the project and has suggested that it may look to expand its stake in the multi-billion dollar property.

The Attorney General and Minister of Legal Affairs has released a statement expressing the government's disappointment at the implementation of a redundancy programme affecting approximately 2,000 Baha Mar employees.

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