The financial services industry in the Turks and Caicos Islands is expected to expand due to low interest rates being paid by US banks.
To this end, a seminar was held earlier this year and, as elections will restore elected government, Governor Ric Todd is now turning his attention to this area, saying TCI is on the doorstep of two of the world’s largest financial sectors -- the USA and Canada --and thus may revitalize the financial industry. Todd has now made it known that his attention will now shift to legislation to improve prospects for the financial services industry.
Financial services, which took a back seat during the Progressive National Party (PNP) government, may be an attractive area for American and Canadian investors, as inflation and extremely low interest rates in the USA put money market yields at an all time low. This is also being reflected in renewed growth in TCI real estate.
The TCI real estate market has also been depressed as a result of the charges of corruption by the last elected government and this caused a sell out and a drop in prices.
In related news, the former permanent secretary of finance, Delton Jones, has now been appointed as a director of the Financial Services Commission (FSC). Jones, who began his term as PS of finance in the Misick administration, continued in this post under the direct rule government of Governor Gordon Wetherell.
Jones, who has a degree in economics from the University of the West Indies, was released as PS and was replaced by Anya Williams under Todd. Williams has now been appointed as deputy governor and the permanent secretary finance position remains open.
Jones replaces Oswald Simons, who resigned from his post to run in the upcoming elections.
The board of directors of the Financial Services Commission is constituted under Section 5 of the Financial Services Commission Ordinance 2007 and consists of seven members, two of whom (the managing director and the permanent secretary of finance) are ex officio.
The principal functions of the board are:
(a) To establish the policies of the Commission and monitor and oversee its implementation;
(b) To monitor and oversee the management of the Commission by the managing director to ensure that the resources are utilized economically and efficiently, that internal controls are in place etc.;
(c) To approve the budget and the financial statements and
(d) To appoint the senior officers, except the managing director.
The directors are:
Errol Allen, Chairman
Kevin Higgins, Managing Director
Anya Williams, Director
Delton Jones, Director
Gordon Kerr, Director
Neville Grant, Director
In related news in the area of finance is a renewed call by PNP leader and candidate for premier, Rufus Ewing, to allow the control of TCI government finances to return to elected government immediately after election.
However, this is unlikely to happen, given that Britain has been imposing increased financial control and oversight in all of its overseas territories.