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Newsletter Vol.12, No 10.

TBI monthly news in review - November 24, 2017

Fintech took centrestage at last month’s Nassau Conference, as financial services industry leaders look at the best application of new financial technology in a low-tax environment.

Financial technology includes all aspects of financial services including retail banking, investment and crypto-currency.

Kelly Banks, senior technology and operations leader at Ansbacher, says the widespread adoption of Fintech could provide opportunities for Bahamian practitioners. Presenting at the conference, she said The Bahamas should move to position itself as a Fintech hub – following the lead of Jamaica and Barbados.

Speaking on a panel later in the day, managing director at Deltec Fund Services, Brian Jones agreed saying: “The Fintech movement is taking over. We need to make sure we are technologically savvy. We have to improve our level of efficiency in client delivery.”

“There is a steep learning curve when it comes to new technology but the information is there, I think it is a matter of us having the will [to embrace it].”

At another conference later in the month, the theme was compliance. Speaking at the Money Laundering Reporting Officers (MLRO) Day, Attorney General Carl Bethel said compliance, once viewed as a “necessary evil”, has now expanded its scope to become an integral part of every institution’s culture and the jurisdiction’s reputation as a whole.

“There is not only a change in the mandates and requirements being made by the international community, but also in the essential nature of the functions you are expected to perform as compliance officers,” he told attendees.

MLRO Day was hosted by the Bahamas Association of Compliance Officers.

In other news, The Bank of NT Butterfield & Son Ltd announced that it has entered into an agreement to acquire Deutsche Bank’s Global Trust Solutions business, excluding its US operations. Deutsche Bank’s Wealth Management business is one of the largest worldwide.

In tourism, the Ministry of Tourism and Aviation has been targeting The Bahamas’ near neighbours and biggest markets, launching a new romantic destination campaign in the US and hosting events in Canada.


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The Bahamas Investor - October News & Press

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Bahamas Ministry of Tourism representatives traveled to Halifax, Nova Scotia during a recent Bahamas Tourist Office Canada sales mission to promote The Islands of The Bahamas and attract Canadian visitors to the destination.

A Bahamian maritime lawyer has told international experts and cadets gathered for a conference in Nassau last week that The Bahamas has the potential to be the Western Hemisphere leader serving as a maritime one-stop shop, calling the possibilities for The Bahamas “infinite.”

Sandals Resorts International has invited over 6,000 travel agents across the US and Canada to attend a series of promotional events.

The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism is gearing up to launch its newest romance competition Say Yes in The Bahamas Wedding Proposal.

Opening the 12th Annual Northern Conference of The Bahamas Association of Compliance Officers in Freeport yesterday, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Peter Turnquest said that the strength of Grand Bahama’s economy is vital to the nation’s overall growth.

Industry leaders gathered this morning to discuss the changing compliance landscape and its implications for The Bahamas, with Attorney General Carl Bethel warning: "The demands [of compliance] are expanding and we are going to have to really change the way we do business if we are to succeed."

The Bank of N.T. Butterfield & Son Ltd today announced that it has entered into an agreement to acquire Deutsche Bank’s Global Trust Solutions business, excluding its US operations. With client assets of around EUR 299 billion (as at June 30, 2017), Deutsche Bank’s Wealth Management business is one of the largest wealth managers worldwide.

The 5th Annual Andros Business Outlook to be held October 26, 2017 at the Dreams Villas in Davis Creek will be under the theme 'Break Barriers! Promote Success'.

The Minister of Labour Dion Foulkes met with chairman of the Clearing Banks Association Ian Jennings and representatives of the six Clearing Banks in The Bahamas earlier this week.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Peter Turnquest signed the Protocol to Amend the Tax Information Exchange Agreement between the government of The Bahamas and the government of the Republic of Finland concerning information on tax matters at the Ministry of Finance, October 19, 2017.

Under the theme ‘Strengthening the Rule of Law Through Technology’, Bahamas Attorney General and Minister of Legal Affairs Carl Bethel, welcomed and addressed 52 attorneys general, law ministers, and delegates to the 2017 Meeting of Commonwealth Law Ministers, October 16, 2017 at the official opening ceremony at Baha Mar’s Convention Centre.

The advancement of Bahamians to high paying jobs in the financial services sector and the enhanced regulation of the industry were some of the matters raised by Minister of Labour Dion Foulkes during discussions with executives of The Bahamas Financial Services Board and the Association of International Banks and Trusts 5 October 2017.

Minister of State for Grand Bahama in the Office of the Prime Minister Kwasi Thompson says he plans to make Grand Bahama the centre of a technology hub in The Bahamas.

More than 150 financial professionals received accolades for their accomplishments at the 41st Bahamas Institute of Financial Services (BIFS) Annual Awards Ceremony at The Balmoral Club last month.

Joy Jibrilu chair of the board of directors of the Caribbean Tourism Organization and director general at the Bahamas Ministry of Tourism, gave remarks at the State Tourism Industry Conference 13 October, 2017 at the Radisson Beach Resort Grenada. Read her address here.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has announced the theme of this year's Diplomatic Week as 'Innovative Approaches to A Changing World'. The week of activities will get underway with a church service this Sunday.

The Commonwealth will unveil a package of legislative reform tools at its Law Ministers Meeting (CLMM) in Nassau, The Bahamas, 16-19 October 2017.

Earlier this week, Dionisio D'Aguilar, Bahamas Minister of Tourism and chairman of the Caribbean Tourism Organization, opened the State of the Industry Conference at the Radisson Beach Resort St George's in Grenada, praising the region's resilience after recent hurricanes. Read his address here.

Addressing Parliament yesterday, Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis said that his administration is resolute in bringing fiscal discipline and order to public finances to forestall any possible economic consequences that could cripple growth and the longer-term prospects for the country.

The 2017 State of the Tourism Industry Conference officially opened yesterday at the Radisson Grenada Beach Resort, Grand Anse, Grenada.

The Baha Mar resort on Cable Beach has been honored with gold and silver at the prestigious 2017 Travel Weekly Magellan Awards for excellence in destination marketing.

Bahamas Minister of Tourism and Aviation Dionisio D’Aguilar says he is looking to renegotiate contracts with cruise companies to increase the economic benefits for The Bahamas. Watch an interview with the Minister here.

Fintech is changing all aspects of the financial services industry and it is vital that The Bahamas stays ahead of the curve. This was one of the key messages from this week's Nassau Conference which saw the sector come together to discuss strategies for future growth.

The United Nations World Tourism Organization elected The Bahamas as president of the Commission for the Americas at the 22nd session General Assembly held in Chengdu, China, in September.

Minister of Financial Services Brent Symonette today urged members of the Bahamian financial services industry to work together with government as his ministry moves forward with key initiatives for the sector.

The Securities Commission of The Bahamas is holding activities this week in celebration of World Investor Week 2017, which runs 2-8 October.

The Securities Commission of The Bahamas has launched a public consultation period in regards to the draft Securities Industry (Fee) (Amendment) Rules, 2017.

The Securities Commission of The Bahamas has launched a public consultation period in regards to The Investment Funds (Amendment) Regulations, 2017.

Speaking at the recent Business-to-business Expo held in Freeport, Minister of State for Grand Bahama Kwasi Thompson said The Bahamas needs to diversify its economy and foster an entrepreneurial spirit.

The National Accounts Section of the Department of Statistics has announced the release of a revised data series for the gross domestic product of The Bahamas, covering the years 2012 to 2016.

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