BVI eyes Africa as financial services expand, says Premier

By BVI News

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(BVI NEWS) – The British Virgin Islands is seeking to expand its financial services sector to a new continent.

Premier Dr D Orlando Smith, who is Minister of Finance, made that disclosure this week.

“A BVI business company can be formed as easily and efficiently in Asia as in Europe or Latin America, and now BVI practitioners are turning their sights to Africa, a continent that represents a great new opportunity for our jurisdiction,” the Premier said.

“No financial jurisdiction is more global than the BVI, which has the largest network of practitioners on the planet,” he added.

His statement comes amid the UK’s ‘public registers’ threat, which has left the territory scrambling to keep its financial services sector sustainable.

The Premier along with a local delegation is currently on a two-week Asia tour to promote the BVI’s financial services and explore new business opportunities.

During his latest update on the progress of the tour, the Premier illustrated how the BVI will ‘lead from the front’ where international corporate structuring for cross-border transactions and investing worldwide are concerned.

BVI/Asia partnerships are attractive

In the meantime, the Premier said there are several benefits to the BVI/Asia business dealings.

“Asian companies investing in international markets want the flexibility and the legal and commercial certainty that BVI structures provide. Rising affluent classes throughout Asia want trust funds, private wealth management, and related services in which the BVI has proven expertise,” he said.

Moving forward, the territory is looking at taking on new initiatives in fintech and digital banking as well as implementing innovative measures that support microbusinesses, Dr Smith added.

According to the Premier, these innovations will be to streamline global trade, investment, wealth creation, and preservation.

To top it off, he added, doing business in the territory provides benefits for the continued development of businesses and economies in Asia and around the world with good customer service.

BVI is advanced

Meanwhile, Premier Smith said the territory has surpassed other jurisdictions in its innovation in corporate structuring.

Some of the areas mentioned include updates to limited partnership provisions that expand the use of restricted partnerships beyond investment funds, into areas such as venture capital investments, management buyouts, project finance transactions, and real estate development.

He further said: “MBC — a new BVI incorporation vehicle for micro businesses that combine technology with the law in a unique way — is extremely beneficial to this sector, and BVI’s new digital bank; Bank of Asia.”

The Premier also said the territory is leading as ‘a centre of excellence’ for dispute resolution and a home to a well-regarded Commercial Court.

“Underpinning the BVI’s expertise in this area is the Commercial Division of the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court, which has as the final court of appeal – the London Privy Council,” he noted.

The local government leader said the Commercial Court brings confidence, stability, and transparency to all BVI legal proceedings, which is complemented by a state-of-the-art International Arbitration Centre providing the best alternate means of dispute resolution.

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