The Gazette Cayman Islands Government Office UK Annual Briefing 2017/18
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Contents 3 Welcome 4 Business 4 Another Year on for the CIGO-UK Team 5 Diamond Jubilee Coat of Arms Celebrations 7 Political Engagement 10 Cayman Islands Delegation attends Conservative Party Conference 11 United Kingdom Overseas Territories Association (UKOTA) 13 The Overseas Countries and Territories Association (OCTA) 16 Royal Relations 17 Commonwealth Meetings, Events and Celebrations 21 Chief Whip Training 22 The GREAT Festival of Innovation 23 Events in Monaco 24 CIGO-UK Brand refresh 25 Lifestyle 25 The Nth Degree 26 Private Lunch with Worldâ€™s Best Chef, Clare Smyth, MBE 27 Cayman Islands Welsh Campaign 28 Cayman Islands Cornish Campaign 29 Friends of Cayman Dinner 30 Cayman Connection UK (CCUK) 33 A Year Through the Eyes of our Tourism Team 35 The West India Committee Project 36 Celebration with Jennifer Dilbert, MBE 37 A Year in Pictures
Welcome Cayman Islands Representative to the UK and the EU, Mr Eric Bush JP
many questions unanswered; throughout the year my approach in this area has been to work with my counterparts in the other British Overseas Territories (BOTs) to ensure that our voices are heard and specifically that interests of the Cayman Islands are considered during the negotiations between that UK and the EU.
Welcome to the second annual briefing from the Cayman Islands Government Office in the United Kingdom (CIGO-UK). Personally this marks the end of my second year in the post of the Cayman Islands Representative to the United Kingdom and Europe. We have had a clear vision for CIGO-UK this year which has centred on promoting Cayman to a wider audience and developing our political engagement in quite turbulent political waters. Our efforts have gathered momentum with the celebrations of the 60th Anniversary of the Cayman Islands Coat of Arms, around which we have developed events and plans for the coming year. The celebrations began with a grand reception at the Durbar Court in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, where over 500 people enjoyed a taste of Cayman inspired food, drink, culture, arts and crafts and music. Cayman Kind was on full display! We followed with a very special private lunch with 3-star Michelin Chef Clare Smyth MBE. We are looking forward to a series of events to celebrate Cayman’s Culture and heritage throughout the coming year. Britain, having chosen to leave the EU in 2016, has had a challenging period of negotiation which has, as of July 2018, resulted in the resignation of two key Cabinet Ministers from Her Majesty’s Government in the negotiations, Brexit Secretary David Davis MP and Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson. We are yet to see how this will all unfold and there are still
While we celebrate the Cayman Islands’ historic relationship with the UK, we are also experiencing tumultuous times, particularly in relation to the acceptance of an amendment to the Sanctions and Anti Money Laundering Act, which looks to legislate directly for the Overseas Territories. This act of the UK Parliament is seen as political overreach and has put some strain on how some Overseas Territories view their relationship with the UK. We have continued to enhance other relationships across our key audiences; political, social and commercial. From formal meetings with UK Ministers, MPs, and Peers to celebrating Cayman culture and heritage with the UK public, and ensuring our Caymanian students and diaspora are safe and making the most of their time whilst studying in the UK. Every day is different and there is always much to do. It is my hope that this annual briefing will give you a glance of what the team is doing on behalf of the people of the Cayman Islands to further strengthen the connections between the Cayman Islands and the United Kingdom. The role and objectives of the Cayman Islands Representative to the UK and EU would not be achievable without a great team, many of whom feature in the following articles. I want to thank each and every one who works for, or with, the CIGO-UK and who help us to make our vision a reality. So once again, it has been another rewarding year! Best Wishes,
Eric Bush JP
Business: Another Year on for the CIGO-UK Team Established in 1982, the CIGO-UK has worked to improve and strengthen the Cayman Islands’ position politically, economically, culturally and commercially within the United Kingdom and Europe. As part of the development strategy, in early 2016 the Deputy Governor, Hon. Franz Manderson MBE, JP appointed Mr. Eric Bush to the position of the Cayman Islands Representative to the United Kingdom and the European Union with immediate to plans broaden the connection between the Cayman Islands and the UK and EU, along with the following objectives to: • Promote the Cayman Islands within the UK and EU. • Create wider opportunities for Caymanian students. • Create opportunities and identify synergies within the UK civil service for the benefit of the Cayman Islands.
Eric Bush JP
During the past 12 months, the Office has seen developments in areas of office structure which strengthen an already experienced team.
Members of the team are: • Charles Parchment, Deputy Representative •D enison Miller, Assistant Representative, Consular Affairs •P hillippa Knights, Assistant Representative, Culture, Social & Student Affairs The boardroom and wider office space, facilities and resources are shared with the Cayman Islands Maritime Authority and the Department of Tourism, UK. We all work closely with each other and seek synergies whenever possible in relative mandates and responsibilities. The boardroom and other resources are available for use by Caymanian businesses while visiting or seeking to do business in the UK. Several individuals and businesses have hosted meetings or recruitment interviews and held other business related activities and events at the Office. The team are looking forward to what the new year has in store!
In early 2016 the Deputy Governor, Hon. Franz Manderson MBE, JP appointed Mr. Eric Bush to the position of the Cayman Islands Representative to the United Kingdom and the European Union
The Diamond Jubilee Coat of Arms Celebrations This year Cayman celebrates the 60th anniversary of Queen Elizabeth II granting the Islands their own Royal Coat of Arms on 14 May 1958. The Premier, Hon Alden McLaughlin MBE, MLA This year Cayman celebrates the 60th anniversary of Queen Elizabeth II granting the Islands their own Royal Coat of Arms on 14 May 1958. In 2019 Cayman will also celebrate the Diamond Jubilee of being granted its first Constitution. Both Diamond Jubilee anniversary events are milestones in the Cayman Islands’ relationship and continued close ties to Britain. The CIGO-UK held a major celebration on 14 May 2018 in the Durbar Court of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. Over 500 people including heads of state and senior officials from the UK and other Overseas Territories attended. There was a large representation from the Cayman Islands, Friends of Cayman, Cayman students and businesses from the UK and internationally. The Premier of the Cayman Islands the Premier, Hon Alden McLaughlin MBE, MLA said “The granting of the Coat of Arms for the Cayman Islands and its people was a significant milestone in the history of the Cayman Islands. It signalled a new beginning as we chose to remain British, and was the first in a chain of events along our path to modernity.” Foreign Secretary, Boris Johnson offered his congratulations on the 60th anniversary of the Coat of Arms and underlined the point that the UK Government is still soundly supportive of the Cayman Islands and what they do and stand for. Thomas Woodcock, CVO DL FSA the Garter Principal King of Arms was then introduced and spoke about the Coat of Arms and the meaning behind each iconic symbol. He also talked about the history of the College of Heralds and its importance. The Heralds are appointed by the British Sovereign and are delegated authority to act on behalf of the Crown in all matters of heraldry as well as the granting of new coats of arms. Garter King of Arms produced two facsimiles of the original warrant of the Coat of Arms which was destroyed in the Government Administration building fire in the 1970’s, one was on display and one will be returned to Cayman.
Garter Principle King of Arms
UK Foreign Secretary, Rt Hon Boris Jonson
The CIGO-UK held a major celebration on 14 May 2018 in the Durbar Court of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office Swanky Kitchen Band
The Diamond Jubilee Coat of Arms Celebrations
A short film telling the story behind the Coat of Arms was shown and it will be used in future as material for educational and information campaigns. The film includes new and archive footage to showcase the importance of the links between the Cayman Islands and the UK. The Premier, Hon Alden McLaughlin MBE, MLA was the final speaker at the event, and said “We are incredibly proud of what we have achieved in the 60 years since her Majesty granted our Coat of Arms. We have worked hard over the past five years to strengthen the ties between our Governments and to seek to break down misunderstandings about the business we do in the Cayman Islands. Despite the recent and most unfortunate vote in the House of Commons, it was truly heartening for me to hear the Foreign Secretary underline the point that the United Kingdom Government is still supportive of the Cayman Islands. In any family, there are disagreements from time to time, however, tonight is an occasion to celebrate our connection and similarities rather than our differences. A celebration of all things Caymanian, our people, food, culture and music.”
“Tonight was a celebration of everything Caymanian, food, culture, music, people. I’m delighted we were able to bring so much to London.” Mr Eric Bush JP
Cayman inspired food and beverages were served to bring a real taste of Cayman to the reception. In addition to Cayman inspired canapés and food bowls including Cayman-style beef with rice and beans, Seven Fathoms and Tortuga rums and Caybrew beer as well as swanky were served as a welcome beverage to guests. Cayman culture was on display throughout the FCO and Durbar Court. A wall of photography showed guests of all aspects of life, culture, history and people from the Cayman Islands. In addition, photographs of key milestones from each decade starting in 1958 to 2018 were on display in a dedicated exhibition room to commemorate developments since the Coat of Arms was granted. Curated by the Cayman Islands National Museum, the display afforded guests the opportunity to touch and feel a variety of Cayman arts and crafts, which also featured artefacts on the heads and arms of Caymanian ladies who wore traditional dresses complete with hats, bags and fans made from thatch. Samples of thatch rope were also on display.
The Premier, Hon Alden McLaughlin MBE, MLA, the Speaker of the House, the Hon. McKeeva Bush, and the Leader of the Opposition, the Hon. Ezzard Miller put on a short and entertaining demonstration of laying thatch rope with masters of thatch rope making Billy Banker and Deal Ebanks overseeing the proceedings. Swanky Kitchen Band’s live performance of self-styled indigenous Caymanian music tracing its roots back to the British Isles, got guests dancing. There is no other Caribbean Island that features the fiddle as the centre of its traditional music genre and it is therefore uniquely Caymanian. Speaking after the event, Alfonso Wright, Executive Chairman, of ‘Celebrate Cayman’ remarked, “tonight was a celebration of everything Caymanian, food, culture, music, people. I’m delighted we were able to bring so much to London to share our history and I’m looking forward to the events that will follow in the Cayman Islands which will bring everyone together as one in this exciting year-long celebration.”
Political Engagement Following a very successful start to the CIGO-UK Parliamentary engagement programme last year, the programme continued this year as the Representative and Deputy Representative met with MPs across the political spectrum to establish better relationships between The Cayman Islands Government and UK Parliamentarians. Shailesh Vara MP In addition to fostering better relationships, another objective of these meetings is to create better channels of communication between various entities of the Cayman Islands Government and Westminster. Ms Sheryll Murray MP is a Conservative MP from Cornwall who has some knowledge of the Cayman Islands and was excited to meet with Cayman Islands Government Representatives to learn more. Ms Murray was keen to know how she could help the Cayman Islands. This particular meeting was timely and relevant following the recent Cornish heritage programme instigated by Mr Bush a few months earlier. Mr Bush was able to inform Ms Murray of the deep heritage connection between the UK and the Cayman Islands and of his recent discovery of the connection specifically to Cornwall where it is now believed that the first settler might have departed from. Ms Murray remains a good Friend of the Cayman Islands and is also a member of the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for the Cayman Islands. This meeting was an excellent example of positive ties between the Cayman Islands and members of Parliament. Mr Shailesh Vara MP, Conservative MP from North West Cambridgeshire was aware of the Cayman Islands and British ties to the country. He was willing to learn more and keen to visit. Mr Vara has since joined the APPG for the Cayman Islands. Mr Bush was able to talk frankly with Mr Vara regarding snap election and learn more about the state of the political landscape of the UK, as well as the EU, and the Brexit referendum. Following this meeting Mr Vara has demonstrated a keen desire to know more about the Cayman Islands and to stay in touch with the CIGO-UK. The meeting with Rt. Hon Dame Margaret Hodge MP gave Mr Bush and Mr Parchment the opportunity to try to explain the extent of Caymanâ€™s compliance regime and to point to the many reasons why the Cayman Islands should not be considered as a jurisdiction where anyone would be able to hide ill-gotten gains. Mr Bush and Mr Parchment were able go into great detail with Ms Hodge regarding some of the many measures the Cayman Islands has taken to guard against secrecy that allows gains to be hidden in the Cayman Islands.
Sheryll Murry MP
Dame Margaret Hodge MP
In addition to fostering better relationships, another objective of these meetings is to create better channels of communication between various entities of the Cayman Islands Government and Westminster
They explained that the Cayman Islands had many bilateral and multilateral inter-governmental agreements in place that closed any possible loopholes and prevented anyone or any company from taking advantage of its system to hide the source of their gains. Mr Bush and Mr Parchment explained about measures such as the KYC system that has been vigorously enforced for the past 20 plus years and explained that the registration system in the Cayman Islands currently is one of the most secure systems in the world, including those of the UK, US and other leading onshore and offshore financial centres across the globe. They explained measures such as the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA), agreements that the Cayman Islands has bilaterally with the US and UK. They explained the Base Erosion and Profit Shifting (BEPS) agreements in reference to the recent scandals regarding Google and Apple shifting their profits to subsidiary companies based in low tax jurisdictions in the Netherland and Luxemburg and pointed out that this could not happen in the Cayman Islands. Rt. Hon Dame Margaret Hodge was open to further meetings as the two representatives stressed that it is important to keep channels of communication open. This led to a follow up meeting with Dame Margaret and the visiting Minister for Financial Services, the Hon Tara Rivers and members of her team. Following this meeting, one of the most significant meetings with MPs took place between the Representatives and the Rt Hon Iain Duncan Smith MP, who helped to instigate strategic ideas to engage with the UK team at the Department of International Trade who were conducting the upcoming trade show in Hong Kong. The pitch was based on pointing to the historical assurances given to The Overseas Territories and reiterated in the 2012 White Paper which promised that the OTs would be adequately represented at home and abroad by Her Majesty’s Government in areas such as trade, security, etc, and, as the UK will now be developing a new trade relationship with the world; fulfilling this promise will have a newfound meaning for the Overseas Territories. The argument was also made pointing out that since the Cayman Islands possessed such a large footprint in the Hong Kong stock exchange with reciprocal company registrations, the UK would greatly benefit from including a delegation from the Cayman Islands in the UK’s team.
Rt Hon Iain Duncan Smith MP and Mr Eric Bush JP
Rt Hon Iain Duncan Smith MP helped to instigate strategic ideas to engage with the UK team at the Department of International Trade Following this important meeting, discussions began to gain momentum with regards to the Cayman Islands involvement within “The GREAT Festival of Innovation” in Hong Kong. The aim of the GREAT Festival was to enable the sharing of innovations that will drive the future of free trade between the UK and the region that will hopefully build long term trade agreements and partnerships. As such the Cayman Islands Government was able to justify its involvement with the UK team at this GREAT festival. A meeting was also held with Helen Goodman MP, who has a similar outlook to Rt. Hon Dame Margaret Hodge with regards to BOTs with financial services. Mr Bush and Mr Parchment were able to have a meaningful conversation about the history of the Cayman Islands consumption based tax system, the Cayman Islands connection to the UK, and even have more of a dialogue on the compliance measures in the Cayman Islands and make the point that the Cayman Islands are usually among the first to adhere to any new stipulations or requirements that come in to promote global standards in order to maintain transparency in the financial services industry.
Hon Tara Rivers JP MLA
This programme is valuable to the Cayman Islands to ensure that there are more voices within Westminster who are knowledgeable about our Islands Lord Naseby As part of the enhanced political engagement measures, the Premier hosted a dinner at the House of Commons organised by CIGO-UK on Tuesday 12 June. The high level delegation visiting from Cayman to attend meetings with HMG, including Minister Tara Rivers, and officials from the financial services team were as also in attendance. The Premier, Hon Alden McLaughlin MBE, MLA commented
“Hosting these events with MPs and Peers offers us the opportunity to engage with Parliamentarians and takes the political engagement programme into a social sphere.” This programme is valuable to the Cayman Islands to ensure that there are more voices within Westminster who are knowledgeable about our Islands and our particular issues. As we saw in the House of Commons and the House of Lords during the recent debates around the amendments put forward on the Sanctions and Anti-Money Laundering bill, several MP’s and Peers were able to lobby and voice their support on our behalf of the BOTS with financial services, and explain that they understand the benefits of the Offshore Financial Services industry on a global basis and specifically to the UK.”
Eric Bush JP engages with MPs
Most members of the Cayman Islands APPG were invited to attend the dinner, including the APPG Chairman, Sir Graham Brady, the long-time supporters of the Cayman Islands, Lord Naseby and Mr Andrew Rosindell MP, Shadow Home Secretary, the Rt. Hon. Diane Abbott MP, and the Rt. Hon. Baroness Floella Benjamin among other influential Parliamentarians. Also in attendance at the dinner were various leaders from the Overseas Territories. Caption Sir Graham Brady MP
Andrew Rosindell MP
Cayman Islands Delegation attends Conservative Party Conference Cayman Delegation and Parliamentarians
For the first time, this year the highest level of the Cayman Islands Government visited the UK to attend the Conservative Party Conference. The Premier, Hon Alden McLaughlin MBE, JP, led the visit, and his delegation included: Hon Tara Rivers, Minster of Financial Services Samuel Rose, Cabinet Secretary Dax Basdeo, Chief Officer of Financial Services Austin Harris, Councillor Andre Ebanks, Snr Political Advisor Roy Tatum, Snr Political Advisor to the Premier Every year the Cayman Islands Representative attends all of the party conferences. This year Mr Bush recommended that the highest level of Government should visit with a delegation who should all experience attending a party conference of the current UK Government, specifically to ascertain the value of attending these at high level in the future. The visit followed with unanimous Delegation agreement on the great value in attending and participating in the conferences. Meetings included the following: Michael Fallon, Secretary of State for Defence, who was well aware of efforts and assistance Cayman had made for the OTs following the hurricanes and commended Cayman Islands on the efforts to assist in the aftermath. Boris Johnson, UK Foreign Secretary, who gave the delegation 45 minutes of time out of his busy schedule in the conference, he greeted the hand of every member of the delegation and promised to be engaged in the upcoming Joint Ministerial Council.
Our aim is to utilise this conference to continue the engagement with elected members of the UK Government
UK Foreign Secretary and Premier, Hon Alden McLaughlin
The visit followed with unanimous Delegation agreement on the great value in attending and participating in the conferences
The UK Overseas Territories Association (UKOTA) On 1 February 2018, Mr Eric Bush assumed the role of Chairman of the United Kingdom Overseas Territories Association (UKOTA). Assuming the Chairmanship of the group also means that the Cayman Islands heads the Political Council, the highest decision-making body which sets the policies of the Association and approves all decisions, activities and agendas. The United Kingdom Overseas Territories Association (UKOTA) exists to promote the interests of the Territories and the cooperation between them. Specifically, UKOTA demonstrates the collective and individual partnerships between the Territories and HM Government. The creation of UKOTA led to the Territories designation as Overseas Territories, from Dependent Territories, the creation of the Overseas Territories Department at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and the evolvement of the Joint Ministerial Council meetings. To date UKOTA has achieved success in a number of areas which include ensuring that the people of BOTs are eligible for full British Citizenship, Visa free entry to Europe and Home fees for BOT students studying in the UK. • Discuss issues relevant to Territories • Work to resolve issues of common interest • Work closely with HMG departments and specifically with the FCO • Provide an effective collective voice • Provide a voice for small, isolated communities • Increased interaction amongst territories. This has enabled an exchange of knowledge, ideas and advice • Provide each Territory greater access to keys contacts – eg Parliamentarians, UK Officials, EU Officials • Work closely with NGOs and statutory bodies on environmental and other issues • Provide a forum for exchange of information between Territories •P rovide information about the Territories
The CIGO-UK also undertook the duties of the Secretariat. In addition, along with the British Virgin Islands, the Cayman Islands co-chaired the UKOTA Financial Services Sub-Committee. Two main objectives this year: •T o write a new Joint Position Paper that seeks to enhance the relationship between the UK and its Overseas Territories • To reform the Constitution of UKOTA, bringing it in line with current legislation and best practice. Eric Bush said,
“The Cayman Islands is honoured to assume the Chairmanship of UKOTA and we look forward to setting an industrious agenda that produces very fruitful and productive year for all of its members.” UKOTA meets every 4-6 weeks to discuss matters relating to the Overseas Territories, and this year better relationships have been established with various departments within Her Majesty’s Government, particularly with the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), which serves as an informational department to assist OTs with environmental conferences and agreements that affect the Territories. The Pre-Joint Ministerial Council is held annually as part of the lead-up to the annual Joint Ministerial Council (JMC) that takes place at the end of the year and sees the Political Council of UKOTA join forces to discuss and deliberate the agenda for the JMC.
The UK Overseas Territories Association (UKOTA)
This year the pre-JMC took place on 13 June in London. Whilst each OT member had their own list of priorities and concerns, the main purpose of the PreJMC is to discuss and identify key issues that are of a collective nature to be raised with the UK Ministers at the annual JMC. A delegation of Government Officials from the Cayman Islands visited the UK to attend these meetings. Topics on the agenda included tax transparency, beneficial ownership and the EU’s proposed list of non-cooperative tax jurisdictions. Other topics included Brexit, UK programme support for the Overseas Territories, hurricane relief and recovery for those jurisdictions hit by hurricanes’ Irma and Maria this season, as well as the effects of climate change and other environmental impacts. The Premier was accompanied by Financial Services Minister the Hon Tara Rivers along with Cabinet Secretary Samuel Rose, Chief Officer Dax Basdeo, Senior Legislative Policy Advisor André Ebanks, Joint Ministerial Council “Sherpa” Jason Webster, and Senior Political Advisor to the Premier, Roy Tatum. As is the protocol, the CIGO-UK provided the usual meet-and-greet service to ensure that Government Officials are met on arrival at Heathrow and assisted with the necessary logistical requirements. Shortly following arrival, a briefing is then held for the Delegation at the CIGO that is geared at reviewing the week’s programs and schedules to ensure all are clear on the week’s events and activities.
BOT All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) The All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for the British Overseas Territories (BOTs) met in February and again in July to discuss matters relating to OTs. APPG members attending include Chairman, Mr Andrew Rosindell MP, Mr Henry Smith MP, Lord Shutt of Baron of Greetland OBE, Baroness Hooper CMG At meetings held for the BOT-APPG, the Cayman Islands and the other OT Representatives are able to update members of the APPG about UKOTA, individual OT activities and keep close ties with its members. Representatives attending the meetings are given an opportunity to share with MPs and Peers details on individual issues such as the state of the economy, new plans and expectations, infrastructure developments and elaborate on issues where assistance is being sought. With regards to Cayman’s contribution, the February meeting proved to be an excellent forum for the Cayman Islands to share their initial vision on the concept of ‘Global Britain’ in the context of Brexit and to point out the opportunity for the UK to embrace and own their OTs with the realisation that this will give them a truly Global footprint and worldwide reach physically and also the realisation of its reach in global finance (i.e. ownership of sovereign debt) to create synergies between the UK and the Cayman Islands.
Ahead of the start of the pre-JMC, a meeting between the Overseas Territory leaders and The Prime Minister, Rt Hon Theresa May, was held at 10 Downing Street. The Prime Minister advised the OT Leaders that the United Kingdom is committing an additional £70 million package of recovery and reconstruction assistance as well as up to £300 million of UK loan guarantees for territories impacted by recent hurricanes that need support in obtaining access to loans to help rebuild.
The Prime Minister advised the OT Leaders that the United Kingdom is committing an additional £70 million package of recovery and reconstruction assistance UKOTA Leaders and Representatives at Pre JMC
Overseas Countries and Territories Association (OCTA) The Cayman Islands is a member of the Overseas Countries and Territories Association (OCTA). This Association, created in 2002, provides a forum in which to develop effective working relationships with the EU. OCTA supports the collective interests of its members in several areas of the EU-OCT Association arrangements, including: economic and trade co-operation, trade development, climate change and environmental issues, human and social development, cultural and social development, and regional co-operation and integration. Mr Charles Parchment from the CIGO-UK is leading the charge for the Cayman Islands involvement in all OCTA related issues including the 11th EU Funding Regional Programme for the Caribbean. Mr Parchment is therefore required to attend most OCTA meetings, either physically in Brussels or virtually through conferencing facilities.
•T o reduce the dependency on fossil fuels by increasing the share of Sustainable Energy in the OCTs’ energy mix •T o build the resilience of the OCTs regarding Marine Biodiversity, to facilitate their adaptation to future changes in the Caribbean basin •T o increase the resilience of Caribbean OCTs’ to extreme and recurrent natural events
Caribbean Regional Programme The sector chosen for the Caribbean Regional Funding Programme under the 11th EDF is Sustainable Energy and Marine Biodiversity for the Caribbean OCTs. A total budget of 40 Million Euros has been reserved for this programme through the European Commission. The Programme entitled Caribbean OCTs Sustainable Energy, Coastal Management and Resilience (ReSEMBiD) focuses on the following agreed upon focal sectors: • Sustainable Energy •C oastal Management •R esilience The overall objective is to contribute to the Caribbean OCTs’ social, economic and environmental development. Building resilience to the effects of climate change and striving towards a low carbon economy will contribute to sustainable economic development in the Caribbean OCTs, including gender equality. The key specific objectives to be pursued are described as follows:
The sector chosen for the Caribbean Regional Funding Programme under the 11 th EDF is Sustainable Energy and Marine Biodiversity for the Caribbean OCTs
Overseas Countries and Territories Association (OCTA)
EU-OCT relationship post Brexit The different scenarios for the future of the EU have potential implications on the possibility or not to maintain the overall funding the EU is using to support the OCTs’ development and the way it is implemented. In addition to ensure that the EC is taking good care of their interests in its FTA negotiations, OCTs, without losing in any way the advantages of their special relationship with the EU, might envisage to initiate or to enhance their dialogue with the relevant emerging powers, especially with regard to the regional dimension of their sustainable development. The Brexit process has huge financial implications: the UK is a net contributor to the EU budget, with a net contribution £8.6 billion in 2016. UKOTs therefore have a lot to lose with Brexit, in terms of the many advantages they derive from their special relationship with the EU. Among these the most obvious are the free access to the EU market for their goods and services, the EU financial support under the OCT-EDF, time-limited movement or permanent residency right across the EU. It is hard to foresee how the UK will replicate the above-mentioned advantages of the OCT-EU partnership through a return to a national approach.
UKOTs therefore have a lot to lose with Brexit, in terms of the many advantages they derive from their special relationship with the EU
Energy Summit for Environment Ministers OCTA held it’s third Energy Summit for Environment Ministers in Brussels in December 2017 which was attended by Mr Charles Parchment, accompanied by Minister for Planning and Infrastructure, Hon Joseph Hew, and Chief Environmental Advisor, Mr Miguel Jacques. Energy Ministers from many of the other Overseas Countries and Territories (OCTs) and technical advisors contributed to the Summit by seeking to increase awareness about the sustainable energy best practices & opportunities available to the OCTs. The most positive outcome of the summit was securing commitments from the EU on further developments related to sustainable energies. Prior to the Summit OCTs held a technical workshop and that was mostly dedicated to Marine Energy, and the policy conference provided opportunities to discuss the most appropriate actions, strategic partnerships and concrete tools for the sustainable energy transformation policies the OCTs. Also participating were members of the European Parliament and representatives of the European Commission, the private sector experts on islands’ parties representing new and innovative sustainable energy systems, and other stakeholders.
The most positive outcome of the summit was securing commitments from the EU on further developments related to sustainable energies
Overseas Countries and Territories Association (OCTA)
OCTA Financial Services Sub-Commitee Members of the OCTA Sub-Committee met to discuss matters relating to Financial Services. Partnership Working Parties (PWPs) are subcommittee or steering groups that are dedicated a particular area of focus. PWP is dedicated to financial services and therefore this meeting included an overview of the publication of the EU Common List of Non-Cooperative Jurisdictions for Tax-Purposes, and in particular discussing a definition of ‘substantial economic activity rises, and the future approach to beneficial ownership issues and the planning for the upcoming tax cooperation workshop for Overseas Countries and Territories. Tax Cooperation Workshop At the end of May, Mr Parchment, Cayman Islands Deputy Representative in the UK visited Brussels to attend the 2 day International Tax Cooperation Workshop. The objective of the International Tax Cooperation Workshop was to facilitate the participation of OCT technical experts in policy dialogue to support OCTs cooperation with international partners on the implementation of international standards on tax transparency and information exchange. This will enable the OCTs to meet their international obligations as jurisdictions in the global tax system. The results of the workshop were an improved understanding of: 1. The mechanics of international tax cooperation 2. Internal tax reform 3. Reforms to the international tax system 4. Tax transparency 5. E U development of list of non-cooperative jurisdictions for tax purposes 6. Implementation of international tax cooperation arrangements and initiatives including: •C ommon Reporting Standard •O ECD Global Forum Peer Review Process •M ultilateral Convention on Mutual Assistance in Tax and Administrative Matters •B ase Erosion and Profit Shifting (DEPS)
Tax Cooperation Workshop
The workshop was also interesting from the view point of what the OECD thoughts were in terms of defining substantial economic activity • OCTA • Observers: ACP, European Parliament • OECD Global Forum Officials Mr Parchment commented, “The conference was very useful from the standpoint that it was in the most part conducted by the OECD and Mr Andrew Auerbach, Counsellor for the Centre for Tax Policy and Administration took the lead on most of the panels to define the OECD’s role with regard to the Global Forum and Peer Review Group, which was very helpful.” The Organisation for Economic Corporation and Development (OECD) was introduced by the EU as they seek to define what constitutes ‘substantial economic activity’ as a guide for their latest tax transparency initiative. Mr Parchment commented that the workshop was also interesting from the view point of what the OECD thoughts were in terms of defining substantial economic activity that must include the digital economy including platforms such as block chains and crypto currency. OCT Forum and Ministerial Conference During the week of the 19th of February 2018 the EUOCTA Forum and OCTA Ministerial conference took place in at the hotel Metropol -Brussels. The Ministerial Conference was led by Hon Cartwright Robinson, Premier of the Turks and Caicos Island, as current Chair of the Association.
Participants to the international tax cooperation workshop included, among others:
The Conference approves the reports and budgets submitted by the Executive Committee, sets the policies for the coming years, and elects the next Chair and members of the Executive Committee.
•S enior OCT technical experts in tax and transparency matters •M ember States Representatives •E uropean Commission Officials
The main outcomes of this Conference were the Political Declaration which is presented to the EU institutions and other partners at the OCT-EU Forum. The Declaration was signed by all the Heads of Delegation.
London Bridge-Cayman In close conjunction with the CIGO-UK, Major David Rankin-Hunt, a 30+ year veteran of the Royal Household has been working with the Cayman Islands Government Office to improve Royal relations and communications, including the development of a new Honours system in Cayman. In February Major RankinHunt travelled to Cayman to observe and evaluate the National Heroes Day celebrations with a view to advising on a programme to reform the National Honours and Awards Ceremony in the Cayman Islands. Major Rankin-Hunt will offer expertise and advise on how the Cayman Islands can enhance the existing Honours system. Major Rankin-Hunt has also been charged with researching the Cayman Islands involvement in arrangements in the event of the death of a Royal, and is communicating with the Royal Household with regards to involving the Overseas Territories in the celebrations. Dubbed ‘London Bridge-Cayman’ (after its UK model) Major Rankin-Hunt and Mr Parchment are in the final stages of completing the operational plan for the program that will take place in the Cayman Islands in the event of the death of HM The Queen. This will entail detailed plans from D-Day (day of passing) to D-D12 (day of the State Funeral). Royal Family News A number of exciting events happened for the Royal Family this year including the marriage of Price Harry and Megan Markle, the birth of Prince Louis Arthur Charles and the retirement of Prince Philip. HRH The Queen’s Annual Diplomatic Reception The Diplomatic Reception is the main diplomatic social event of the year for Buckingham Palace in London and reflects The Queen’s importance in the country’s diplomatic relations Mr Eric Bush attended the white tie event with Mrs Bush. At the event Mr Bush met the Prince of Wales, taking the opportunity to introduce himself, Mr Bush invited His Royal Highness to the Cayman Islands, who promptly responded that he would love to return. Mr Bush followed up with a formal letter of invitation to the Royal Household and received a positive response from Principle Secretary to TRH the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall. Mr Bush also attended the Foreign Secretary’s Diplomatic Reception at which he met dignitaries and heard the Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson speak to his guests.
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge with baby Prince Louis Arthur Charles.
Prince Philip retires
Mr Bush invited His Royal Highness to the Cayman Islands, who promptly responded that he would love to return Mr and Mrs Bush at Reception
Major Rankin-Hunt CVO MBE
Commonwealth Celebrations and Events As a British Overseas Territory, the Cayman Islands enjoy observer status within various bodies of the Commonwealth, with Her Majesty the Queen at the Head. As part of the work by the UK Government and CIGOUK, there is emphasis placed on strengthening the links between the Commonwealth and the British Overseas Territories. As such, a strategy set out by Mr. Bush focused on the importance of the Cayman Islands having visibility in all major ceremonial events.
The Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) The Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) met for a breakfast meeting in March to discuss matters relating to the Overseas Territories. The CPA exists to develop, promote and support parliamentarians and their staff to identify benchmarks for good governance and to implement the enduring values of the Commonwealth.
Mathew Welds and Janelle Syms
Eric Bush JP and Benito Wheatley at Westminster Abbey
Commonwealth Service at Westminster Abbey Mr Eric Bush joined United Kingdom Overseas Territories Representatives at the Commonwealth Service at Westminster Abbey, in celebration of the Commonwealth. The Commonwealth Service is Britain’s largest annual inter-faith gathering, held on the second Monday in March each year. Among the 2,000-strong congregation were 800 children from schools and youth groups. The Service this year takes the theme, ‘Towards a Common Future,’ ensuring that the Commonwealth is responsive to global challenges and delivers a more prosperous, secure, sustainable and fair future for all citizens, particularly its young people. Attendance at the Service is by invitation, issued by The Royal Commonwealth Society. Two Cayman students, Matthew Welds and Janelle Syms also attended the service and experienced a very special historical commemoration for the Commonwealth.
The Commonwealth Service is Britain’s largest annual inter-faith gathering, held on the second Monday in March each year
Commonwealth Celebrations and Events
Reflection of Commonwealth Day Celebrations, by Janelle Syms The day began with a tour of the Palace of Westminster, in which we saw the Houses of Parliament. The tour provided fascinating insights to the development of democracy and presented some eye-opening revelations regardinghow modern society is conducted. Our day continued with a round-table discussion in the presence of Hon. Emilia Lifaka, the CPA Chairperson, Ms. Dawn Butler, the first African-Caribbean woman to be elected into British Parliament, Lord Purvis of Tweed, and Mr. Jarvis. Ms. Butler presented the key-note address in which she urged Youth Parliamentarians to hold our governments accountable for ensuring that the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) were met. The theme for this year’s Commonwealth day was ‘Towards a Common Future’, and emphasis was placed on encouraging participation among the youth, deeming us ‘ambassadors for change’. Myself, and fellow delegates were placed in groups and discussed ways in which political participation can be encouraged among the youth in Commonwealth countries. We highlighted the importance of Government officials listening to the opinions of the youth, and taking such opinions and thoughts into consideration before implementing policies and practices that will ultimately impact future generations. Focus was also placed on encouraging political education, allowing for citizens to become aware and have a greater understanding of the political process, as well as issues facing their country and the global community. Following our discussion, our suggestions for implementation were presented to the panel, and will later be presented at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM). Reflection of Commonwealth Day Celebrations, by Matthew Welds Participating in the 2018 Commonwealth Day celebrations was both an honourable and thoughtprovoking experience. Throughout the day, we took part in various discussions, tours, and observances which were all extremely enjoyable. We began the day with an insightful tour of the Houses of Parliament which discussed the history, and political significance and development of Parliament in the United Kingdom. All delegates participated in various round-table discussions focused principally on the Commonwealth Day theme, ‘Towards a Common Future’. The theme aims to consider how global issues are collectively
affecting the Commonwealth, and ways to create a better future for all citizens by exploring sub-themes such as sustainability, safety, prosperity and fairness. As a part of the roundtable discussions, myself and the other delegates also participated in break-out group discussions where we discussed ways in which the various Governments in the Commonwealth could strengthen connections, and increase political interest and participation amongst youth in their Member States. While in these groups we offered suggestions on how this might be achieved, and later presented our recommendations to the panel presiding over the discussions. This was a particularly empowering experience, particularly as some of our recommendations fell on the receptive ears of panel members who were eager to act on our suggestions. All of our suggestions were later presented at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) being held that same day. The panel consisted of several esteemed members including Ms Dawn Butler, the first elected AfricanCaribbean woman to become a Government Minister in the UK, who also gave the keynote address. Her speech was inspiring and highlighted many issues affecting African-Caribbean citizens throughout the Commonwealth, and called for a stronger relationship between the Member States.
Commonwealth Heads of Government Meetings (CHOGM) The Premier, Hon Alden McLaughlin MBE, MLA came to London to attend three special events for the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meetings and related Business Forum. The Premier stated: “My attendance at the CHOGM not only gave me the opportunity to not just build relationships with leaders of various jurisdictions of the Commonwealth and the UK Government, but also to put Cayman again on the global stage and to continue to build the Cayman Islands profile in the world. I believe that to be the most important achievement of this week in London. As the world becomes increasingly global and as Britain looks further afield and seeks to renew its ties within the Commonwealth I believe there is an important place for the Overseas Territories and a great opportunity for us to be part of the new global Britain and for us to exploit the opportunities that this presents to increase trade and business and investment in the Cayman Islands. Fifty three Commonwealth counties were represented and that is the largest summit of its kind anywhere in the world. The opportunities to build relationships and to explain what Cayman is and what Cayman does is vital at these events. I was able to renew friendship with Secretary General of the Commonwealth, Baroness Patricia Scotland and had the opportunity to speak with Princess Beatrice of York, memb er of the royal family. I also had the opportunity to meet with a range of various heads of Government and various Ministers within the UK Government which has been a very useful experience and will assist in continuing to build better relationships with the UK Government and forge new relationships with other Commonwealth countries.” Minister Hew Attends Commonwealth ITC Forum Hon. Joseph Hew MLA, Minister for Commerce, Planning and Infrastructure, attended the Annual Commonwealth Information Communications Technologies (ICT)s Forum in London in June. The biennial meeting, first convened in 2014, is an opportunity for the Commonwealth ICT Ministers to meet and discuss matters of common interest paving the way for building Commonwealth consensus. The Forum places emphasis on the outcomes of CHOGM 2018. The theme for this year’s event was Committed leadership: harbouring a roadmap for ICT enabled growth and focused on leveraging ICTs for prosperity.
The Premier, Hon Alden McLaughliln with Baroness Patricia Scotland
The Premier, Hon Alden McLaughlin and Princess Beatrice of York
“I was able to renew friendship with Secretary General of the Commonwealth, Baroness Patricia Scotland and had the opportunity to speak with Princess Beatrice of York, member of the royal family.” The Premier, Hon Alden McLaughlin MBE, MLA
One of the key outcomes of the Forum was the adoption of a declaration on cyber security which commits to: • Establish a cyberspace that supports economic and social development rights online • Build the foundations of an effective national cyber security response • Promote stability in cyberspace though international cooperation. The event took place in two parts; the first component was a closed-door meeting, for Ministers and their advisors which took place on 18 June 2018 at Marlborough House, headquarters of the Commonwealth of Nations and the seat of the Commonwealth Secretariat. This was followed by a two-day open Ministers Forum at the Copthorne Tara Hotel Kensington, London, on 19 and 20 June. The open forum admits Commonwealth regulatory bodies, ICT sector companies, civil society and interested parties an opportunity to meet and engage on the various policy issues with participating Commonwealth ICT ministries.
Commonwealth Celebrations and Events
Minister Hew at ITC Forum side meeting
On the morning of 19 June, the outcomes of the closeddoor meeting were presented, showcasing best practices across the industry and the interactive programme allowed for further policy and technical discussions. During the Commonwealth ICT Ministers Forum in 2016, Commonwealth Ministers issued a declaration which called for more efforts by countries in the key areas of broadband, cybersecurity, and applications, as well as greater Commonwealth coordination at international fora. This year the open forum discussed: •F inance and investment opportunities •H ow to enable regulatory environments •H ow to expand the reach of broadband •C ommonwealth ICT and Industry Awards •O ver-the-top services •P rivacy and cybersecurity • ICTs for disaster management The Open Forum provides an opportunity for the outcomes of the Ministers’ meeting to be shared with a wider stakeholder group and to engage in discussions with the international ICT sector on wider issues such as broadband, applications, internet governance and cybersecurity. On Tuesday 19 June, Minister Hew took part in a panel which included Toulon Zhao Secretary General International Telecommunications Union, Detlef Eckert Vice President Government Affairs Huawei, Honourable Dr. Andrew Wheatley Minister Science Energy & Technology Jamaica. Honourable Shri Manoj Sinha Minister of State Telecommunications Republic of India and Moderator Visa Fuatai Purcell Director ICT Development, CTO. Minister Hew commented: “It was a great honour and a real a privilege to be a part of this important Forum and to participate in a panel discussion focused on Digital Leadership. Not only did it enable a widening knowledge of developments in the industry, but also the opportunity to share thought leadership and best practice in this industry from the Cayman Islands perspective. The week also provided opportunities to have bilateral meetings with member countries such as India and others that were focused on issues related to digital IDs, cloud system technologies for small business, mobile payments and other phone-to-phone services. We also engaged in discussions with satellite companies offering data provisions on the role it plays in redundancy and recovery from natural disasters.
Commonwealth Enterprise and Investment Council The reception we received from the CTO was encouraging and the event also enabled other bilateral discussions on issues such training methods, infrastructure and development of modern digital policies.” The Commonwealth Enterprise and Investment Council A delegation from the Cayman Islands led by the The Premier, Hon Alden McLaughlin MBE, MLA, including Financial Services Minister Hon Tara Rivers met with Lord Marland of Odstock, Chairman of the Commonwealth Enterprise and Investment Council (CWIC) and Richard Burge, Chief Executive. The meeting was arranged by the Cayman Islands Representative in the UK, Eric Bush following earlier discussions with the Council’s Director of Business Development, Abdul Hamza. The purpose of the meeting was to discuss the strategic partnership between the Commonwealth Enterprise and Investment Council and the Cayman Islands. In discussion was the possibility of co-hosting a CWIC event in 2019. Mr Bush said of the meeting “This meeting was the continuation of a conversation that we started in Commonwealth Heads of Government Meetings and we look forward to a continued and beneficial partnership with CWIC for the Cayman Islands.” Lord Marland of Odstock, Chairman of the Commonwealth Enterprise and Investment Council, is a British businessman and politician, having served as Prime Minister’s Trade Envoy, Minister for Energy and Climate Change and Business, Innovation and Skills, and Treasurer of the Conservative Party.
Chief Whip Training Councillor Austin Harris MLA attended a series of meetings and workshops over a two-week period to better understand the roles and responsibilities of his position as Whip of the Government of National unity. The Chief Whip is a political office whose role is to administer the whipping system that tries to ensure that members of the party attend and exercise voting as the party leadership desires. Mr Harris is Councillor for the Premier’s Ministry of Human Resources, Immigration and Community Affairs and the elected Member of the Legislative Assembly for Prospect on Grand Cayman. He was invited to Westminster to understudy the Whip’s Office in the Houses of Lords and Commons in order to gain a comprehensive understanding of the role as Whip. “As both the constitutional and legislative processes in the Cayman Islands continue to evolve, it is important that members receive the necessary training and exposure to enable the effective operation of Government in Parliament,” said The Premier, Hon Alden McLaughlin MBE, MLA.
“...following a successful initial visit to the United Kingdom, I am honoured to have been invited back and given the opportunity to shadow senior UK politicians who serve as Whips for both the House of Lords and House of Common. The knowledge gained will better enable me to carry out my duties to the Government and the people of the Cayman Islands.” Councillor Austin Harris
“It is a tremendous opportunity” said Mr. Harris, “following a successful initial visit to the United Kingdom, I am honoured to have been invited back and given the opportunity to shadow senior UK politicians who serve as Whips for both the House of Lords and House of Common. The knowledge gained will better enable me to carry out my duties to the Government and the people of the Cayman Islands.” The CIGO-UK helped to facilitate the training and relationship building exercise. Mr Bush commented, “We are happy to be a part of this initiative that seeks to strengthen the relationships with our own members of the Legislative Assembly and UK parliamentarians. It is only through continuous and positive engagement that we can identify all the synergies and opportunities within the special relationship between the Cayman Islands and the United Kingdom.” Sir Patrick McLaughlin, MP and Councillor Austin Harris MLA
The GREAT Festival of Innovation The Cayman Islands Delegation headed to Hong Kong in March for the GREAT Festival of Innovation. The delegation, led by The Premier, Hon Alden McLaughlin MBE, MLA, used the trip to court business in the strategically autonomous Chinese city. Financial Services Minister Hon Tara Rivers, Chief Officer Dax Basdeo, and Cayman Finance CEO, Jude Scott, began with a round-table discussion, chaired by Mr Scott, with representatives of the financial services industry in Hong Kong who use Cayman products to further their clients’ business needs. “The meeting was extremely useful as it allowed for a discussion on the tremendous opportunities for financial services firms pursuing business in China,” Minister Rivers said of the two and a half hour session. “We also discussed some of the key challenges faced by some firms in promoting and using Cayman products. Cayman has a strong reputation in this market, and we certainly see that there is a wealth of opportunity to further develop the Cayman brand. As the minister responsible for financial services, it is important that we attend this festival and speak directly with the financial service providers and clients in as many forums as possible,” she added. The four-day festival, organised by the UK’s Department for International Trade (DIT), took place in March 2018. The Premier and the Cayman delegation also attended a private reception hosted by the British Consular General, where they met British Secretary of State for International Trade, Dr Liam Fox and Minister of State for Trade and Export Promotion, Baroness Fairhead. Premier McLaughlin said the festival had provided the Cayman Islands Government with a chance to support financial services firms in Hong Kong and highlight Cayman’s strengths in financial services. “Taking advantage of this invitation by the UK Government to attend the festival provides us with the opportunity to support this sector as well as support the UK directly,” he added. As well as the Premier and Minister Rivers, the delegation included Commerce Minister Joseph Hew, Health Minister Dwayne Seymour, and their support staff, as well as representatives from private sector organisations Cayman Finance, the Cayman Islands Chamber of Commerce and Health City Cayman Islands.
Cayman Islands delegates at the GREAT Festival
Events in Monaco Every year the Cayman (Shipping) Registry, a devision of the Maritime Authority of the Cayman Islands, participates in the Monaco Yacht Show. This year, Eric Bush joined Representatives from the Cayman Registry George Town headquarters and the organisaton’s European Regional Office in Southampton at the booth promoting the Cayman maritime flag. Established in 1903, the Cayman Registry is the worldwide leader in the registration of superyachts, but as a Category 1 member of the prestigious Red Ensign Group, can register vessels of any size and description, including wet and dry cargo ships. Cayman Maritime’s CEO Mr Joel Walton Commented: “The Monaco Yacht Show is considered the most prestigious yachting event in the world,” says Mr. Walton, “and is attended by tens of thousands. As one of the world’s most prestigious registers, it is imperative that we maintain a highly visible presence at the event each year. It is a real thrill to walk along the quay in Monaco and see Cayman’s Red Ensign waving from the majority of the sterns of the world’s most beautiful vessels.” Mr Charles Parchment, Deputy Cayman Islands Representative in the UK visited Monaco in May to research opportunities to host an event for the Cayman Islands at the Monaco Boat show in September. Partnerships have been established with organisations such as Red Eye Events, the Nth Degree dining club and The Maritime Authority of the Cayman Islands to host a high level event at the Monaco Yacht Show. Robert Walton, of the Nth Degree Dining Club was able to show Mr Parchment the ropes when researching event coordination. Mr Parchment commented “It was a pleasure to attend to a prestigious event organised by Nigel Essam of Red Eye Events, to experience examples of hospitality at major events that the Cayman Islands may be able to offer. This hospitality event was centred around the Grand Prix, and the Cayman Islands will look to host events around the Monaco Yacht Show in September as part of our annual celebration of the Cayman Islands Coat of Arms 60th Anniversary.”
Charles Parchment at Private Event, Monaco
“It is a real thrill to walk along the quay in Monaco and see Cayman’s Red Ensign waving from the majority of the sterns of the world’s most beautiful vessels.” The Premier, Hon Alden McLaughlin MBE, MLA
CIGO-UK Brand Refresh CIGO-UK has undergone the first phase of a brand refresh with an ongoing effort to modernise the branding of its communications. The launch of the Cayman Islands Government Office UK website, www.cigouk.ky is a significant milestone in CIGO-UK communications. Focusing on news and Caymanian culture and heritage in the UK, the site shares the work of CIGO-UK throughout Europe and in Cayman. CIGOUK.KY key features include: Subscriptions: The opportunity to sign up to receiving CIGO-UK’s monthly newsletter. Videos: An online gallery of videos showcasing the work of CIGOUK and Cayman events in the UK. News: The publication of news stories on our dedicated website to help you keep up to date with Business and Lifestyle news on our News pages A Twitter Feed: We share a live twitter feed from Cayman Islands Representative in the UK Eric Bush, on our home page, stay up to date with tweets and retweets of news relevant to Cayman in the UK. A Facebook Page: CIGO-UK’s new Facebook page to help you stay up to date and engage in conversations about Cayman in the UK. A Dedicated Point of Contact: You can comment on the website or share news of your own, by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
“ We are developing a more coordinated approach to CIGO-UK branding and communications.” Eric Bush JP
Lifestyle: Nth Degree Annual Dinner, Book Launch and Christmas Drinks The Nth Degree is an exclusive private dining club based in London, Dubai and other prestigious locations around the world. The Nth Degree Club boasts an exclusive membership network of successful, influential and like-minded individuals and companies. The club creates bespoke opportunities for members to experience exceptional fine dining whilst establishing new friendships and business connections. At the heart of the club lies a diverse calendar of events in the top venues in both London and Dubai. These include tastings, drinks soirées, annual sporting events, as well as the club’s signature concept; The Private Dining Experience. Private Members from the Nth Degree Club were invited to a Christmas reception hosted by Mr Bush at the Cayman Islands Government Office. This reception offered another opportunity to introduce Cayman and the Cayman Islands Government London Office to high net worth individuals and leaders of industry in the UK in a casual setting of the Office.
This year, the Cayman Islands were given the opportunity to contribute to the Nth Degree Book, a luxury lifestyle publication produced exclusively for members of The Nth Degree Club.
This year, the Cayman Islands were given the opportunity to contribute to the Nth Degree Book, a luxury lifestyle publication produced exclusively for members of The Nth Degree Club. Featuring the world’s leading Private Dining Room Guide alongside luxury lifestyle features, the book embodies the essence of The Nth Degree Club. Features within the book cover everything from all corners of luxury lifestyle, from yachts to aviation, and fashion to travel. Along with exclusive interviews with International Chefs such as Heston Blumenthal and Claire Smyth, the book is content-rich with cutting-edge design and stunning photography. A complimentary subscription to the book is included as an Nth Degree membership benefit. This year the CIGO-UK participated in the 50 year anniversary gala dinner of the UK Restaurant Association. Mr Bush commented “Tourism being a key pillar of Cayman’s economy with culinary tourism being a key focus and offering, it is important to create strategic links to other global culinary capitals.” A 7 day vacation at the new Seafire Hotel acted as the major prize during the evening. More than 400 guests of the evening participated with excitement in the heads or tails coin toss.
Mr Eric Bush and Nth Degree Club Members
Private Lunch with World’s Best Chef, Clare Smyth MBE Food is a key part of the Cayman Island’s success story. In the last few years, Cayman has built a reputation as the culinary capital of the Caribbean, winning plaudits for the quality, authenticity and international standards of its food and restaurants. Food has become a quintessential part of the Cayman Islands Experience. As part of its culinary ambition, Cayman has attracted some of the worlds’ top chefs including the UK’s most acclaimed female chef, Clare Smyth MBE – the first British woman to hold and retain three Michelin stars. Celebrating links between the UK and Cayman, Clare spent 10 days in Cayman in 2017, to creating a series of bespoke dining experiences celebrating the distinct flavours of the Caribbean. In April 2018, Chef Clare Smyth was named “World Best Female Chef”, a prestigious accolade distributed by the international awards body, World’s 50 Best Restaurants. As part of Clare’s support and links to the Cayman Islands, a special lunch was held at her new London Restaurant, Core, for 40 guests in partnership with the Nth Degree on 15 May 2018. Clare was in the Cayman Islands in March 2017 where she hosted 10 days of “pop up” culinary events including a four-course dinner at the Kimpton Seafire, a harvest dinner where she worked with the head chef from Abacus and other public demonstrations. She also led an afternoon class for children aged 8 to 12 teaching them basic culinary skills which were all part of Jamie Oliver’s global initiative.
Chefs at work at Core restaurant
Cayman has attracted some of the worlds’ top chefs including the UK’s most acclaimed female chef, Clare Smyth MBE – the first British woman to hold and retain three Michelin stars
The guest list for the luncheon included high net worth business people, members of the Nth Degree Club and a Cayman delegation led by The Premier, Hon Alden McLaughlin MBE, MLA, HE Governor Anwar Choudhury, Speaker Hon. McKeeva Bush, Leader of the Opposition, Hon. Ezzard Miller, Chris Saunders, MLA and Councillors Barbara Conolly and Capt. Eugene Ebanks. The event was hosted by Robert Walton MBE. Robert, who frequently visits relatives in the Cayman Islands, is a recognized and respected figure in the hospitality industry and is President of the Restaurant Association of Great Britain. The lunch continued the theme of Cayman’s links to the UK, but also highlighting the message of Cayman as a Culinary Capital.
Eric Bush JP and Chef Clare
The Premier, Hon Alden McLaughlin presents Cayman pin to Chef Clare
In Search of Watler: Findings from the Welsh Campaign As part of ongoing cultural initiatives in the UK, CIGO-UK launched a second regional campaign to find relatives of ‘Watler’ the first Welsh settler in the Cayman Islands more than 360 years ago, in 1658. The first settlers of our previously uninhabited tropical paradise are believed to be a man called ‘Walter’ from Wales and a man called ‘Bawden’ from Cornwall, both said to have been members of Cromwell’s forces in the West Indies. Their names subsequently morphed into ‘Watler’ and ‘Bodden’, which to this day are prevalent family names on the Islands. Walter and Walters are commonly found names in Wales, with notable concentration in and around Glamorgan, Monmouthshire and Pembrokeshire. The names can be traced back more than 500 years. The search for relatives of Cayman’s first settlers is part of a campaign to raise the awareness, knowledge and understanding of the 360-year relationship that exists between the Cayman Islands, Cornwall and Wales specifically, as well as with Britain as a whole. Following a successful trip to Cornwall last year, Mr. Eric Bush visited Cardiff with a team from the Cayman Islands Government Office in July to make further connections, meet with key stakeholders in the campaign, and share the story of Cayman across Wales. The visit included an exchange of signed Cayman Islands and Welsh rugby shirts at the iconic Principality Stadium to mark the occasion, and a visit to the Archives to research the Walter name. The Cayman Islands partnered with GlobalWelsh in their efforts to research the Welsh Connections. The aim of GlobalWelsh is to create a community where Welsh people and those connected to Wales can access opportunities, connections and expertise from their varied membership. GlobalWelsh understands the importance of roots, however distant, and the ties that bind them.
Making Welsh Connections
The search for relatives of Cayman’s first settlers is part of a campaign to raise the awareness, knowledge and understanding of the 360-year relationship that exists between the Cayman Islands, Cornwall and Wales specifically, as well as with Britain as a whole
A competition was launched as part of the campaign, to encourage residents of Wales going by the name of Watler, Walters or Walter to find out whether they are a direct descendent of the original Caymanian settler, with the hope of winning a trip to the Cayman Islands to visit the resting place of their ancestor. The response to the competition has been extremely positive. Eric Bush JP and Nick Pearce-Tomenius
Eric Bush JP at ITV Wales News
With over 200 entries online and via Facebook CIGOUK were able to communicate with many people who believed to be descended from Walter. The competition developed with the discovery of a group of people who had been researching their genealogy through Ancestry.com and who were in touch with Olivaire Watler in the Cayman Islands. Kate Kandiah of Cayman Connection UK was able to co-ordinate an event for the Watlers to meet in Cayman in July and for Olivaire Watler to make a presentation about Watler genealogy. Ms Kandiah commented
“This was a special occasion as the Walter family researching their genealogy had joined forces with Watlers to partake in DNA tests but had not actually met, this event was an opportunity for all the Watler’s to meet and for Cayman residents to learn about the history of the name.”
Developments on the Cayman Cornish Campaign Following a trip to Cornwall last year to find ancestors of one of the first settlers believed to have left from Cornwall, CIGO UK continued links to Cornwall through connection with the London Cornish Association. Eric Bush and a team from the Cayman Islands Government Office were invited to join the London Cornish Association to present to members about findings from the Cornish Connection Campaign. Mr Bush gave a talk for over an hour about the Cayman Islands and the historic links to Cornwall.
Chris Richards, Member of the Council of the London Cornish Association and Eric Bush JP
Walters meet Watlers in the Cayman Islands
Eric Bush JP presents to the London Cornish Association
Friends of Cayman Dinner The Premier, Alden McLaughlin hosted a dinner for associates and Friends of Cayman in November, at which he was able to update about affairs in Cayman and thank friends and new associates for their continued support of the Cayman Islands in the UK. â€œThese events are a good opportunity for thanking our long term associates and welcoming and networking with our new friends.â€? Eric Bush JP
Cayman Connection UK (CCUK) Cayman Connection UK is a network for groups and individuals associated with the Cayman Islands who now live, study or work in the UK. CCUK has a student focus assisting Caymanian student with their endeavours in the UK. CCUK is supported by CIGO-UK and is part private sponsored. The network is predominantly run by a group of Cayman Student Ambassadors, led by a Lead Student Ambassador, This year the Lead mantle was passed from Julianna Wood to David Ramsaran. Student Reception in London Over 40 Caymanian Students enjoyed an evening with The Premier, Hon Alden McLaughlin MBE, MLA, on Saturday 2 December in London. This annual event is hosted by The Premier and held at the Cayman Islands Government Offices in Mayfair. The tradition of Cayman students getting together in London before the Christmas holidays has been honoured by the Cayman Islands Government London Office for over ten years, and this year’s event was the largest yet. The size of this event was a result of the efforts of the Cayman Islands Government and the Cayman Student Ambassadors of Cayman Connection UK (CCUK) who ensure that Caymanians in the UK are connected and receiving support and encouragement during their time away from home. The event marks the end of a busy week of meetings and events for The Premier and his delegation from Cayman. The Cayman delegation included The Minister of Financial Services and Home Affairs, Hon Tara Rivers MLA; Senior Political Advisor to The Premier, Mr Roy Tatum and Senior Political Advisor to the Cabinet Office, Mr Jason Webster. Also in attendance was The Cayman Islands Governor Designate, Mr Anwar Choudhury. Ms Kate Kandiah, who runs the CCUK network with the Student Ambassadors welcomed attendees, introduced special guests and thanked the Cayman Islands Government for hosting the event. Ms. Kandiah followed with updates about CCUK including introductions of the new team of Cayman Student Ambassadors, new features on the CCUK website, mentor and networking programmes and a reminder to the students on how to get involved.
The Premier, Hon Alden McLaughlin MBE, MLA followed by updating the students of Government affairs in Cayman and encouraging all in their studies. Mr McLaughlin introduced Minister Rivers, who gave a rousing message to students about how to speak confidently to peers on the subject of the Cayman Islands as a financial centre and how to deliver informed responses to attacks on and misconceptions concerning the Cayman Islands’ tax jurisdiction. The talks ended with The Governor Designate, Mr Anwar Choudhury, commenting that he was very much looking forward to beginning his post as The Governor of the Cayman Islands next year, assuring students that he stands ready to assist them wherever possible. Ms Kandiah said of the event, “I am always encouraged to see so many new faces at these events and this year we welcomed over ten new students who had not previously attended this event. This shows that our message of support for Cayman students in the UK is being heard. I am delighted to have had such a wonderful response. I commend the Cayman Islands Government for their increasing efforts to help young Caymanians get the absolute best from their tertiary education, and for their continued support for students while they are far from home.”
“I am always encouraged to see so many new faces at these events and this year we welcomed over ten new students who had not previously attended this event.”
Cayman Connection UK (CCUK)
CCUK 5th Birthday Annual Reception in Cayman Youth, parents and other Caymanians, including a number of local Watlers participated in a happy, fascinating and enlightening event to celebrate the fifth anniversary of Cayman Connection UK, at the South Sound Community Centre on Wednesday, 18 July 2018.
Student Group at CCUK CultureShock Workshop
Aspiring students in the UK networked and learnt about how to prepare for and then navigate the UK scene when they take up residence there for further education. Organised by CCUK Co-founder Ms Kate Kandiah, the event also featured an ongoing project of CIGO-UK about reaching out to family of the earliest settlers of the Cayman Islands, the Watlers and Boddens. Present on the occasion to meet and greet local family members were a visiting family from the US, now known as Walters but have undergone ancestral research to confirm they are related to the original Watlers of the Cayman Islands. Thirty students and parents gathered to take part in a workshop in the afternoon, specifically addressing some of the cultural differences between the UK and the Cayman Islands and to address some of the challenges that can be a faced when moving abroad. Ms Kandiah spoke to the group with CCUK volunteers to share experiences and answer questions. Volunteers who were already students in the UK were also able to encourage new students with stories and examples of the benefits of studying in the UK. Ms Kandiah said of the event “These annual events in Cayman are integral to the work of CCUK. It is a great opportunity to provide a space for students considering studying in the UK to meet existing UK students. The event is also an opportunity for students to learn about the work of CIGO-UK.” She went on to say “It was a special honour to be able to host an event for the visiting Walters family who have been tracing their roots back to Cayman for many years”
Aspiring students in the UK networked and learnt about how to prepare for and then navigate the UK scene
David Ramsaran, Incoming Lead Student Ambassador
CCUK Anniversary cake
These annual events in Cayman are integral to the work of CCUK The Annual CCUK reception is also a chance to introduce the new Lead Student Ambassador, who takes on the main responsibility of leading the Student Volunteers who run the network. The incoming Lead Student Ambassador is David Ramsaran, who has been volunteering with the network for two years. Mr Ramsaran commented “I am proud to take on the role of Lead Student Ambassador for he CCUK this academic year. We have some great development plans for the network that I am looking forward to progress, for example a new website, better communication channels for members across the UK and new cultural programmes and partnerships. We’re already planning for the annual reception next year as we have new ideas following feedback from this event.”
Cayman Connection UK (CCUK)
Cayman Pub Quiz! Another great day of CCUK fun happened in Kings Cross, London in March, when Cayman students and CCUK Friends got together to celebrate all things Cayman and UK over a classic pub quiz! Lead Student Ambassador Julianna Wood put together a fun and interesting series of quiz rounds and four teams battled for first place. A mixture of UK and Cayman themed questions entertained the group and all vowed to hold a pub quiz every year. Food and special cocktails were enjoyed by all and we are looking forward to next year already! Congratulations team SNAPPER for coming in the lead and a huge thank you to the Cayman Islands Department of Tourism and the Cayman Islands Government London Office for their support of the event. Travis Thompson: “Living in the UK means that you won’t usually come into contact with people from the Caribbean, much less Caymanians. However, going to the pop quiz was such a nice experience because it gave us a chance to interact with similar students experiencing the same things that I am. I also made new friends along the way. This gave me a sense of being back at home in Cayman, despite us studying at different universities throughout the UK.”
“This gave me a sense of being back at home in Cayman, despite us studying at different universities throughout the UK.”
CCUK Students at Cayman Pub Quiz
Cayman Student Ambassadors (CSAs) The Cayman Student Ambassadors (CSAs) join forces on the first Tuesday of every month in London. Meetings include planning for social and networking events, management of the Cayman student database, dealing with CCUK enquiries, updating and managing the CCUK website and social media channels. The work of the CSAs is crucial to the running of the CCUK network and each student offers something different to the team. Current Student Ambassadors are: • Juliana Wood • Arren Croy McCoy • Alanis Linwood-Amor • Kadeja Bodden • David Ramsaran • Chantel Martin • Nijel Powery • Jamal Hinds
A Year Through the Eyes of our Tourism Team The Cayman Islands Department of Tourism (CIDOT) in the UK is currently made up of a team of four staff members. The team are all professional and dynamic marketers and specialists who support the CIDOT global mission and the Cayman Islands Tourism brand. CIDOT is responsible for developing business to business (B2B) opportunities primarily in the UK & Ireland (due to direct airlift with British Airways). The ‘Secondary markets’ of Continental Europe are also served whilst always researching opportunities for the rest of the world outside of North America and LATAM, which are geographical areas handled by other CIDOT offices. With regards to sales and marketing, CIDOT’s primary focus is on promoting luxury Cayman Islands holidays to affluent couples and families, whilst also targeting niche interests including scuba diving, wildlife/nature, and the romance market (destination weddings and honeymoons). The main channels of promotion are fully integrated through print and digital advertising, PR, and social media, supported by a regional website and programme of e-newsletters. In terms of print advertising, CIDOT supports media that is mainly read by an affluent target audience and where the quality of images is integral to the appeal of the destination. Market research was carried out to produce new print creative for advertising and social media purposes. The ideas were brought to life when creative teams and photographers headed out to Cayman for the photo shoot in April. CIDOT produced two stunning videos, which were promoted on social medial and also formed the basis of a TV advertising campaign during winter 2017/18 in which over 56,000 highly targeted households were reached through Sky TV’s Adsmart profiling. An advertising campaign was also run on the London Underground network at stations including London Waterloo and London Victoria using the same videos. The ads were seen by over 3 million people an average of 13 times during the two-week period. An adventure film was also produced to showcase the soft adventure activity options available in Cayman. The trip was seen through the eyes of an influencer who documented her experiences via social media.
The team are all professional and dynamic marketers and specialists who support the CIDOT global mission
DOT Exhibition stand
A Year Through the Eyes of our Tourism Team CIDOT produced two stunning videos, which were promoted on social medial and also formed the basis of a TV advertising campaign The film was promoted via social media, the monthly newsletter and the website. A gallery of over 40 stills were also produced from the shoot that have been used as further collateral to promote the Cayman Islands. As part of the CIDOT PR strategy, CIDOT have recently hosted a number of well-connected media and influencers producing high-end coverage both online and in print. Examples include The Irish Times, The Irish Independent, MTV Travel, City AM and top trade publications TTG and Travel Weekly. Broadcast also plays a part in the PR strategy which has resulted in the Cayman Islands being featured on a number of broadcast channels after the release of the 1,000th blue iguana in the Cayman Islands, a landmark event that has seen the species come off the endangered species list. CIDOTâ€™s Europe Visit Cayman Islands Facebook page and new tourism website (launched in May) aid the conversion of interest, as do regular monthly newsletters which are received by nearly 70,000 opt-in subscribers. CIDOT also appears at a number of well-known events with a purpose-built exhibition stand, which was re-designed for the 2018 show schedule. This plays an important role in extending the awareness of the Cayman Islands and provides face-toface interaction with prospective visitors. Shows exhibited at this year include the RHS Malvern Spring Festival, the RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower Show, Goodwood Festival of Speed and BBC Countryfile Live. From a business to business perspective, CIDOT are active in widening the distribution of package travel sales for the destination and implement a sales strategy to increase supportive tour operator brands whilst also training travel agents to better sell these beautiful islands. Another highlight this year was the delivering of the first ever travel agent training session via Facebook Live. The training was hosted in conjunction with Online Travel Training (OTT), a platform that hosts destination training for travel agents. The training was extremely well-received with over 1,000 views. You may be surprised to see non-tourism brands promoting the Cayman Islands. CIDOT reaches out to likeminded brands with similar audiences offering a Cayman Islands holiday incentive for them to achieve their own sales targets. These include Sunglass Hut, Suitcase magazine, Leica optical equipment and cameras and London Cocktail Week. The work of CIDOT also drives demand for the British Airways Boeing 777 service from London Heathrow as well as sales of Cayman Airways tickets via transit hubs in the USA and Caribbean.
The West India Committee Project The West India Committee is currently working with the Government of the Cayman Islands to enable a greater understanding of the history and heritage of the Cayman Islands. This project is part of a wider campaign to increase awareness, knowledge and understanding of the history of the Cayman Islands and its links to Great Britain. The West India Committee is an institution founded in London 1735 and incorporated by Royal Charter in 1904. The Committee’s library and archive has been inscribed by UNESCO as a memory of the World. David Wells, Research Manager for the project visited Cayman to research Cayman’s history. The Committee has now produced materials to be used in the Cayman Islands and in the UK including an: E Book showcasing the history of the Cayman Islands and can be read online or downloaded Education Pack which can be shared with teachers of schools in the UK and in the Cayman Islands for classes with school aged children. Teachers Pack as a reference guide to supplement the education pack. Poster showcasing Cayman’s history and culture.
“My visit allowed me to confirm several facts and develop my arguments, gave me new avenues of research to consider and provided the opportunity to take some very useful pictures for future publications.” David Wells, West India Committee
“It is amazing how we continue to uncover new facts about the history of the Cayman Islands and the connections we have with the UK.” Eric Bush JP
A Celebration for former Cayman Islands Representative, Jennifer Dilbert MBE Former Cayman Islands Government Representative in London, Jennifer Dilbert MBE, celebrated her birthday at the Government Office this year, reuniting with many old friends and associates from her time as Representative in London. Among guests were Representatives from the other British Overseas Territories, Cayman Islands Government staff and Friends of Cayman. Mrs Dilbert was presented with Fortnum and Mason gifts as keepsakes and memories of her time in the UK, given by The Cayman Islands Government Office. Mrs Dilbert said of the event, â€œIt was so lovely to be back in London with old friends to celebrate my big birthday! I thank the Government Office staff for all their help and of course the use of the new London Offices for my event, the new offices are great, very modern and well fitted out. What a pleasure it was to be backâ€?
It was so lovely to be back in London with old friends to celebrate my big birthday!
A Year in Pictures
From Political engagement with MPs and Peers, meetings with fellow Overseas Territories and assisting students...
A Year in Pictures
...to historical research projects, yachts in Monaco, and dealing with legal constitutional arrangements with Her Majestyâ€™s Government, no two days at CIGO-UK are ever the same!
A Year in Pictures
Our Coat of Arms cultural celebrations have been a huge success and we look forward to celebrating the 60th Anniversary of the Cayman Islands Constitution in July 2019
A Year in Pictures
A Year in Pictures
View our full image gallery at cigouk.ky
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A Year in Pictures
â€œIt has been such a diverse year, we look forward to continuing this busy programme into 2019!â€? Eric Bush JP
Cayman Islands Government Office in the United Kingdom 34 Dover Street, London United Kingdom, W1S 4NG UK Telephone: +44 (0)207 491 7772 Fax: +44 (0)207 491 7944 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
The Annual Briefing from the Cayman Islands Government Office in the UK.