Thursday, January 27, 2011

BVI Premier Speaking on BVI Business Opportunities

Last week, 2011 BVI Business Outlook conference was held at the Scrub Island Resort, under the theme "Embracing the New Normal - Rising to the challenges of a more competitive and regulated global economy". This conference was attended by more than 200 delegates from the public and private sectors of the financial services, tourism and telecommunications areas.

BVI Premier and Minister of Finance Hon. Ralph T. O´Neal, OBE, expressed his opinion that it was “quite fitting and timely” that the conference was being held at the beginning of the year, after the “economic uncertainties” of 2010. He also said that “it is no longer business as usual in the Virgin Islands”, and the unique solutions must be found for the unique problems. The Premier named some significant events over the past years that impacted the economic landscape, including the shift of standards that govern cross-border taxation, the exploration of the major financial centers in the world, and the election of the first African-American president in the United States.

The Premier and the Finance Minister said that there are many existing possibilities regarding the future of the BVI territory's economy, but but the established institutions, various legal frameworks, practices and policies “must be robust and sustainable”. He also said that "In the development of our tourism and financial services sectors, we must ensure that it takes place to further the overall development of the Territory. We must also ensure that we are ever conscious of the challenges in the changes that will occur worldwide in those sectors."

Other speakers who made their presentations at the conference included BVI Financial Secretary Mr. Neil Smith, Managing Director of the Financial Services Commission Mr. Robert Mathavious, Executive Director of the BVI International Finance Centre Ms. Sherri Ortiz, and Ms. Haddassah, Director of the BVI Tourist Board. The keynote address was delivered by the former Premier of Bermuda.

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