Offshore Financial Services
Based on a tradition of innovation and excellence, the Cayman Islands are regarded as one of the world's premier international financial centres. Cayman's clientele have access to a wide array of services including banking, trust companies, mutual funds, company management, structured financing, shipping registration, accounting, insurance, and securities listings on the stock exchange.
Supporting this array of services are highly skilled legal, accounting and other professional advisors. These factors combine to make Cayman the jurisdiction of choice amongst sophisticated investors. Given the proven regulatory regime, innovative approach, and client focus, the Cayman Islands remain committed to delivering an environment for business at its best.
Leading Offshore Banking & Financial Centre
Throughout the global community the Cayman Islands is recognized as a sophisticated, mature and diverse financial centre. As a premier financial services jurisdiction, Cayman attracts the world's leading accounting, legal and investment firms, and the banking industry remains a cornerstone of Cayman's success.
Adherence to the regulatory standards of the Basle Committee on Banking Supervision is fundamental to the regulatory approach, and the Cayman Islands is an active member of the Basle Committee's Offshore Group of Bank Supervisors.
In addition, there exists a unique combination of stability, innovative legislation, commercial strength, Government support, and the absence of corporate, capital gains, income, payroll and withholding taxes, on domestic or foreign entities.
Banks subscribe to the "know your client" tenet, and the Cayman Islands as a jurisdiction maintains a robust anti-money laundering regime which extends to the proceeds of all serious crime as defined under the 'gateway' legislation.
The Cayman Islands welcome only recognized, well-run banks and, as a result, banks with household names from all corners of the globe are taking advantage of Cayman's modern facilities to conduct international business. These banks are licensed under the Banks & Trust Companies Law (2001 Revision).
Cayman offers a full range of banking products for local and nonresident clients. Deposit, savings, and checking accounts are widely available at many banks with competitive interest rates offered in all major currencies. Time deposits are particularly popular, although it should be realized that interest rates correspond to prevailing international rates at any given time.
Other services readily available include letters of credit, foreign exchange, guarantees, safe custody, commercial loans, and mortgages. The Cayman domestic banking scene reflects a buoyant economy making the industry one of the largest employers on the Island. This status ensures an experienced work force well able to respond to market trends.
The supporting infrastructure in the Cayman Islands is modern and sophisticated. Real-time online access to the world's major financial markets meets the needs of clients who demand cross-border services equal to those of New York or London.
The attraction of the trust concept is straightforward: the trust is the most flexible financial instrument for making estate planning arrangements, short term or long term, free from the restrictions of the legislation of the domicile of the settlor. Whatever the individual's wishes may be for the future ownership, management, and enjoyment of his property, they can almost certainly be achieved by using a trust. The trust is also increasingly used in commercial structures such as mutual funds and structured debt.
The attraction of the Cayman Islands as a jurisdiction in which to establish a trust is also clear: in recent years, as the popularity of the trust concept has grown worldwide, so have the cadres of experts in trust formation and administration in the Cayman Islands. Consequently, that expertise and, more importantly, the legislation which has grown out of it, have attracted more trust business to the Islands to the extent that there are now more trust assets under management in the Cayman Islands than there are deposits in Cayman banks.
The increasing complexity of the investment world and the difficulty in preserving wealth have made the trust particularly important as a means by which the individual can provide financial security for his family after his death even though they may not be knowledgeable in investment matters.
The Special Trusts (Alternative Regime) Law 1997 (STAR), substantially extends Cayman's trust planning framework. STAR allows for trusts for any purpose (charitable trusts, person trusts, and purpose trusts) as well as mixed trusts, provided they are lawful and not contrary to public policy.