Statement By PREMIER AND MINISTER OF FINANCE,
HONOURABLE ANDREW A. FAHIE
ON DR. ROBERT MATHAVIOUS, LLD
RECEIVING THE ORDER OF THE BRITISH EMPIRE (OBE) HONOUR
Saturday, 10th October, 2020
Today, I join with the BVI Community in congratulating Dr. Robert Mathavious, LLD on receiving the Order of the British Empire (OBE) recognition from Her Majesty the Queen Elizabeth II for his unwavering services to the British Virgin Islands.
In personally extending congratulations to Dr. Mathavious on this new honour, I thanked him for his commitment and expressed that this recognition is yet another undeniable example of what our Virgin Islands people are capable of achieving.
This OBE award comes under the heels of a statement I made in the House of Assembly during the Tenth Sitting of the Second Session of the Fourth House of Assembly on Friday, June 19, 2020 titled: “Appreciation – Dr. Robert Mathavious, LLD”.
At the time, I was advised that Dr. Mathavious, after almost 20 years at the leadership of the Financial Service Commission, had indicated his decision to retire from the Commission, effective December 31, 2020.
I rose to pay tribute and say thanks to one of this Territory’s most brilliant professionals, who has dedicated his lifetime to public service, and who has held some of the highest offices in this country, performing with distinction.
Dr. Mathavious has served as Chairman of the Recovery Development Agency, Acting Governor, Financial Secretary, to name a few of the Public Service positions.
Over the years, Dr. Mathavious has also contributed significantly to a number of professional Boards. He has been a member of the Financial Investigation Agency Board, the FATCA Negotiating Team for the Virgin Islands and the Tax Information Exchange Agreement Negotiation Team for Government of the Virgin Islands.
In 2013, Dr. Mathavious was conferred with an Honourary Doctorate by the University of the West Indies (UWI) Open Campus in recognition of his stellar contributions to Caribbean development in the field of Financial Services. He is a Fellow of The Offshore Institute (1990) and received the Rotary Club of Road Town Citizen of the Year award for 1994-1995.
Dr. Robert Mathavious is recognised as a pioneer and innovator of the BVI’s Financial Services Sector. He has been one of the driving forces behind this industry, which is one of our two main economic engines, and which has provided sustenance and opportunity for our people for almost four decades. He has led our financial services sector for three of those four decades and is a Virgin Islander in whom we are proud.
While there are many prominent voices in the world of Financial Services in the BVI, Dr. Mathavious is regarded as the father or the guru of the industry. And, the Honourary Doctorate from UWI stands as undisputable testimony to this.
Many of the BVI’s bright stars in the Financial Services Industry – and who came in as juniors and today are deputies and directors – would have been able to develop and mature under his wings, or through his initiatives.
Dr. Mathavious is the embodiment of this wisdom and selflessness and I know that even after retirement, a great part of his legacy will live on throughout the rest of time in those able professionals whom he has shaped through his leadership, tutelage and foresight, and those touched indirectly by the fruits of his work.
He has always been a key advocate and champion of the Financial Services Industry. He has always believed in shaping Virgin Islanders for the future, and to take charge of their destiny. He shaped them not to be loyal to himself; but to be loyal to the Territory and to be capable of running the financial industry competently when their time comes.
Dr. Mathavious was appointed as Director of Financial Services in 1993 and was charged with the development and regulation of the Financial Services sector. Consequently, he played a critical role in the design of legislation to establish the Financial Services Commission, through the Financial Services Commission Act of 2001, and was subsequently appointed to his present post as Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of the Commission in 2002, on the recommendation of the Board of Commissioners to the Government.
He is living proof of our intellectual, academic and professional abilities. His achievements and his example are world class. His achievements are beacons for all of us to believe in ourselves and our people, and for us to have faith in lifting up our people.
Financial Services Industry practitioners, locally and many abroad, and the Territory at large, owe Dr. Mathavious a profound debt of gratitude for his extraordinary service, leadership and mentorship. Not only did he help to cultivate and grow this industry, but he also moulded and trained many professionals.
I am indeed pleased to see him honoured for his commitment to the development of the Virgin Islands in this notable way.
May God continue to richly bless him as he celebrates yet another milestone and achievement.