BVI Premier Advances Brexit, Financial Services Agenda

9 February, 2017

Premier and Minister of Finance Dr. the Honourable D. Orlando Smith, OBE, has completed meetings of high level ministerial and parliamentary engagement in the United Kingdom.

The Honourable Premier joined other Overseas Territory (OT) leaders during a courtesy call on Prime Minister Rt. Hon. Theresa May at the Prime Minister’s Office on Wednesday, February 8.

The courtesy call followed the UK-OT Joint Ministerial Council on European Negotiations on February 7, during which UK Ministers and OT Leaders discussed the potential impacts of Brexit on the Territories. OT Leaders were given the opportunity to discuss their varied priorities for negotiations including freedom of movement, international trade and EU funding.

Premier Smith also attended a series of other meetings including a meeting for OT Leaders on beneficial ownership hosted by Home Office Minister of State for Security and Member of Parliament, Ben Wallace. During the meeting, the BVI's implementation of OT-UK beneficial ownership agreements was recognised as the most advanced in respect to the development of systems to enhance the exchange of information with UK law enforcement authority.

The Premier also met with Vice Chairman of the Conservative Party and Member of Parliament, Mark Field to demonstrate the BVI's new state of the art system for exchanging beneficial ownership and further discuss the BVI’s priorities for Brexit negotiations.

According to Premier Smith, “My engagement with ministers and parliamentarians allowed my delegation to reiterate BVI's priorities for Brexit negotiations for financial services as well as to demonstrate our progress and commitment to sharing and exchanging information with law enforcement."

Premier Smith added, "I am also encouraged that the UK Government will take into account the views and needs of the OT's."

The Premier’s UK visit is in line with Government’s mandate to strengthen international relationships, in positioning the Virgin Islands for the future.