Despite the winter temperatures, things continue to hot up in Guernsey’s fund management sector. With the net asset value of total funds under management and administration increasing to £280 billion (quarter ended 30 September 2018), the jurisdiction has every right to consider that its breadth and depth of experience is placing it in the forefront of international activity.
Guernsey Finance has recently released a set of core messages that define and differentiate Guernsey’s financial services industry, available to view here.
PEA managing director, James Orrick explains, “We truly believe that Guernsey has many competitive advantages, not least its reputation and highly skilled workforce.” Here are the eight good reasons why PEA choose to operate in Guernsey, and why it comes so highly recommended.
1. Guernsey has been an international finance centre for over 50 years
From a population of over 60,000 people, the finance industry employs approximately 22% of this English-speaking island’s workforce and is by far the largest industry in Guernsey. Its employees have attained vast knowledge and experience in financial services. Guernsey’s currency is Pounds Sterling, it is in the same time zone as the UK and the very frequent flights to and from the island via London Gatwick take around 45 minutes. Investors and fund managers have a long history with Guernsey domiciled funds. Fund managers can reach over 80% of global wealth making a Guernsey fund an attractive proposition for fundraising purposes.
2. Guernsey’s financial regulator is flexible and ‘hands-on’
The Guernsey Financial Services Commission, while robust, has a reputation for a flexible, pragmatic and open door approach, putting it ahead of its competitors. Guernsey’s relatively small size means it’s adaptable, nimble and quick to respond to changes in the global finance industry and ensures continued best-in-class regulation. It also offers guaranteed turnaround times for regulatory approvals and a highly regarded fast-track service.
3. Guernsey has been independent for 800 years
Guernsey, situated in the Gulf of St Malo around 30 miles west of Northern France, has been an independent, self-governing jurisdiction with its own stable government for 800 years. The island is part of the British Isles, but not part of the United Kingdom nor the European Union. It has its own parliament, legal system, its own legislature and it is fiscally independent from the UK.
4. Guernsey has a special relationship with the EU
This special relationship excludes Guernsey from most of the effects of the Treaty of Rome. There are, however, special arrangements under Protocol 3 for the free movement of manufactured and agricultural goods between Guernsey and the EU member states. Despite Brexit, Guernsey’s position with both the EU remains unchanged. Guernsey funds reach parts of the world that managers want to reach, and can do so quicker and more competitively than EU funds.
5. Guernsey meets 48 of the 49 highest standards on AML and CFT
Guernsey’s high standards of regulation were reconfirmed at the beginning of 2016 when MONEYVAL reported the island as being compliant or largely compliant with 48 out of 49 of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) recommendations on anti- money laundering (AML) and countering the financing of terrorism (CFT) – the highest standard of any jurisdiction so far assessed.
6. Guernsey is hugely innovative
Guernsey’s continued success is due to the cultivation of a conducive legal, regulatory and tax environment in which innovation can thrive. In 2012 Guernsey became the first jurisdiction in the world to introduce image rights legislation and establish a register. The island pioneered the protected cell company concept and is the largest captive insurance domicile in Europe.
7. There are more than 1,000 funds domiciled or serviced in Guernsey.
Guernsey-domiciled funds are used for cross-border distribution into all corners of the globe, while the island is also home to more non-UK entities listing on the London Stock Exchange than any other jurisdiction globally. The GFSC has seen an increase in applications for new funds, with a year-on-year rise to more than 110 made December 2017 – May 2018.
8. Guernsey is a leader in tax transparency and information exchange.
There are no banking secrecy laws in Guernsey. The island is a member of the OECD’s ‘whitelist’ established in 2009, making it one of only 40 jurisdictions placed on the original list. It adheres to the internationally accepted standards developed by the OECD meaning that Guernsey is considered as a ‘cooperative jurisdiction’.
To find out just what the jurisdiction can do for your business. Contact James Orrick firstname.lastname@example.org if you’d like to find out more information about how PEA, Guernsey can help.