Looking Backwards and Forwards. John Hunter Dip IoD, Cert PFS - Head of Banking & Fiduciaries, Finance Isle of Man

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2018 was an exceptionally busy year for me promoting the Isle of Man as an International Finance Centre of excellence and repute, and undertaking a considerable amount of ground work on our plans for 2019.

During 2018 we saw two new financial services licenses granted one, an Asset Finance business and the other a new bank under the Alternative Banking Regime. The latter being a new representative office for a significant bank and who have been quick to begin developing a more significant presence on the Island.

At a time when many of our comparative jurisdictions are seeing a reduction in such licences it is good for us to stem the tide somewhat and I am positive that there will be some good news in the near future as we work with several new potential financial services businesses who have a desire to establish new ventures in the Isle of Man – and we hope to be able to share some positive stories over the next couple of months. Watch this space.

We have become more focused, and to some extent more understanding of the huge challenges in developing business under the Alternative Banking Regime but progress is being made where possible and we would expect see movement in 2019.

Considerable work has gone in to looking at how digital identification and verification is being developed across the world especially in relation to Electronic Identification Authentication and Trust Services (eIDAS) within the European Union member states and it is clear that we need to be alert and ready to respond to what is a fast moving and developing market.

Looking to 2019 this will be an equally busy year of planning and promoting the Isle of Man as an International Finance Centre of innovation and excellence. The latter encompassing a busy conference/event schedule which includes everything from a round table at the TAG Law conference in London in May supporting our professional services, partnering with industry to present the Isle of Man story to circa 200 people in Geneva, to representing the Isle of Man at the Master Investor Conference 2019 in London - as well as supporting the Maritime sector at various events as we seek to grow our brand and jurisdictional awareness.

The real message we are taking everywhere is what a great place the Isle of Man is to do business and the strength of our brand as an International Finance Centre.

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