Gibraltar delegation on Island to seek business
Gibraltar officials are in Bermuda stepping up their efforts to build a strong insurance presence at home.
A delegation meets this week with Premier Michael Dunkley, as the fellow British Overseas Territory pursues an agenda they say is of mutual benefit to both jurisdictions.
Gibraltar is interested in developing its captive insurance business and creating an Insurance Linked Securities business. But they also want to offer a domicile and insurance licence to more Bermuda companies seeking business in the European Union.
Gibraltar’s Financial Services Minister Albert Isola is leading the eight-person financial services contingent that is attending this week’s Bermuda Captive Conference (BCC), which concludes today.
He said last night the initiative came out of discussions with Bermuda companies that already had subsidiaries in his country.
Minister Isola said: “As two British Overseas Territories, we have both been extremely successful in certain areas of business.
“This is not like competing with Bermuda, but offering a service like we’ve done in the funds sector with the Swiss asset managers who remain in Switzerland. In respect to their EU business and access to European Union markets, they can set up a parallel system in Gibraltar to access that market.
“I see it as a complementary thing in which we can move forward in a spirit of cooperation.
“We spent some time today with the Bermuda (Business) Development Agency, talking through how we do things and how they do things and ways in which we can work closer together and learn from each other’s experiences and ambitions.”
Further business meetings have been organised with individual insurance companies and banks, as well as meetings with the Bermuda Monetary Authority (BMA) and the Bermuda Stock Exchange.
The visit will culminate in a Gibraltar Day lunch in which the visitors will host Bermuda Government officials and a large number of business contacts — a total of about 60 people — at Ascot’s Restaurant.
Gibraltar was already the event sponsor of the Monday lunch with exhibitors at the Bermuda Captive Conference.
The visiting delegation includes insurance specialists and service providers from Gibraltar as well as Finance Centre Director, James Tipping, and the senior executive, insurance from Gibraltar Finance, Mike Ashton.
Mr Tipping and Mr Ashton arrived early in Bermuda to prepare for the opening of the Conference. Gibraltar’s insurance regulator, Michael Oliver is also in Bermuda.
Mr Isola said: “Our regulator is here to engage with the Bermuda regulator (BMA) to see what possibilities for working together exist.”
A statement yesterday from the Gibraltar Ministry of Finance noted: “This is the first time that Gibraltar will be represented at what is Bermuda’s most important gathering of insurance companies and professionals and the visit has been coordinated with the Government of Bermuda and conference officials.”
It quoted Minister Isola as saying: “Gibraltar is offering Bermudian based-businesses — that wish to operate in Europe — our unique proposition, among the British Overseas Territories and Crown Dependencies, of access to the European Union single market via a Gibraltar insurance licence.
“We are therefore looking to work in close partnership with the Bermudian Government and the private sector on the Island.”
“The Gibraltar delegation will also be further exploring the area of Insurance Linked Securities with Bermudian industry professionals who specialise in this sector.
“HM Government of Gibraltar is working to make Gibraltar the European hub for this growing area of business.”