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Chamber launches website as a one-stop source for information

The Cayman Islands Chamber of Commerce has launched a new website – www.caymanchamber.ky – that they anticipate will be an incredibly useful resource for anyone wanting information on the Chamber and all the great services it offers, as well as providing excellent up-to-date information on the wider Cayman community.

Chamber CEO Wil Pineau said that the new website serves a multitude of purposes.

“Increasingly, the business community, the general public locally and also visitors to the island are looking to the Chamber to provide them with information on happenings across the island, whether that is an update on the latest news, or information on conferences, seminars and events,” he explained. “They may also be searching for who is a member of the Chamber and what services we have to offer. All this and more can be found on our new website.”

Ensuring that the website had a wide set of uses was key to its success, Mr Pineau said.

“Not only did we want the website to educate users as to the benefits of becoming a Chamber member and our suite of signature events and programmes that we run; we also wanted users to make the website their regular go-to when they were searching for updates on happenings and events,” he advised.

In this way, the Chamber have devised a useful tool for users to keep tabs on upcoming events via their innovative Calendar Access function, which breaks down any category for easy navigation when it comes to Chamber events taking place throughout the year.

“Users have a great tool for being able to plan what signature events and programmes they want to be part of,” Mr Pineau added. “Another great feature is our Community Calendar, whereby members and non-members can submit their event to be featured on the Chamber community calendar for free.”

Training is a big part of the Chamber’s offerings and so they have devised an online training schedule, on which the Q1 2021 Training Schedule is now available, enabling users to plan their training in advance with easy online payment functionality.

Other sections of the website are dedicated to advising about Chamber key issues and how people can get involved, as well as excellent member perks and their highly popular discount card.

The website offers easy online payments for all Chamber events, training and membership management, as well as a Member Directory giving a comprehensive directory of businesses on all three islands. Searching for businesses in the Cayman Islands is a straightforward process by category. People looking to advertise their business can do so, with advertising opportunities available to suit all budgets, while newcomers and visitors can search a comprehensive list and links to tourism attractions, legal assistance, charities, organisations and government departments.

“We have put a great deal of thought and effort in ensuring we provide a website that tells the story of the Chamber, educates users as to the comprehensive services we offer, gives an excellent overview of the Islands and keeps people up-to-date on important happenings as well. We anticipate it will be a singular point of reference for an ever-growing body of users who can trust our information and use it to help them navigate their professional calendars on a day-to-day basis,” Mr Pineau confirmed.


Alex Panton Foundation 2021 Annual Symposium theme announced – “Youth Mental Wellness: Reflection, Recovery, Resilience”

The Alex Panton Foundation has announced that its 4th annual symposium will take place Saturday February 20th 2021 at the Ritz-Carlton Grand Cayman from 10am – 3pm.

The theme, “Youth Mental Wellness: Reflection, Recovery, Resilience” recognises the turbulent year that 2020 was for Cayman’s youth. At the symposium, the Foundation will look back on COVID-19 and the effects of the pandemic on Youth Mental Wellness, their recovery efforts during this time and how through programmes such as the Youth Ambassador Programme and the Emotional Literacy Programme, the Foundation is helping to build resilience in our young people.

 “The entire Cayman Islands community along with the rest of the world, has experienced an unprecedented disruption, even more so our youth,” said Jane Panton. “Those that were meant to graduate did so without their classmates by their side and learning was done in solitude at home. It is important that we look back on the last year and help set up our youth with the tools they need to navigate an uncertain future.”

Attendees can also look forward to an update on the Foundation including the Youth Ambassador Programme and the Emotional Literacy Programme launched in 2019. “2020 was a difficult year but it highlighted the importance of the programmes we put in place prior to the pandemic and their immediate value. We look forward to sharing the success of these programmes and plans for the coming year with the public,” said Mrs Panton.

Representatives of the Alex Panton Youth Ambassadors Programme will be speaking. All other speakers will be announced over the coming days.

To register for the 4th Annual Alex Panton Foundation Youth Mental Health Symposium visit alexpantonfoundation.ky.

For information on exhibiting and sponsorship opportunities, please email andy@tower.com.ky.

The symposium would not be possible without the support of our generous sponsors: Tower, Burger King, Health City Cayman Islands, Maples, Ogier, The Wellness Centre, Aspire, Hope Academy, Infinite Mindcare, RBC Dominion Securities Global, Walkers, and Appleby.


Camana Bay has love to give this Valentine’s Day

If you have plenty of love to give but need some ideas on how to show it, Camana Bay is here to help this Valentine’s Day.

In the spirit of the holiday, the shops, services and restaurants of Camana Bay have a number of opportunities on offer to help you give love to those special people in your life – including yourself.

Whether it’s a shared meal, pampering experience, gift or memento or just quality time together, find out how you can celebrate the spirit of St. Valentine at Camana Bay.

Make some memories

Try out an interactive cooking class at Bon Vivant, whether you are “cheffing” solo or with a friend or loved one. The kitchen studio is hosting two cooking classes, on Friday, 12 February and Saturday, 13 February from 6 to 8 p.m. Participants will prepare a four-course meal of crab cakes, coq au vin, boeuf bourguignon and tiramisu, all with wine pairings. The class will be limited to 12 participants, at a cost of CI$125 per person, so book early to avoid disappointment. Contact Bon Vivant at +1.345.623.2665.

Take in a movie together at Camana Bay Cinema, upgrading for a special date night to a VIP showing in one of the cinema’s three VIP theatres. Pick up a hot dog, popcorn or tray of nachos and receive 50% off a 100g Dairy Milk, Fruit & Nut or Whole Nut Cadbury chocolate bar!

Take in the Town Centre lit up in pink in celebration of Valentine’s Day while enjoying an ice cream or gelato. Take a romantic evening stroll with your loved one or catch up with a friend or family member over a coffee or juice enjoyed on the harbour as you enjoy the most priceless gift of all – quality time with those special to you. The lights will glow pink from 12 to 14 February.

Treat those taste buds

Pane & Pasta is offering its delicious and fresh housemade pasta and bread as part of a special St. Valentine three-course menu. For CI$50, choose between three starter options, three main course options and two desserts as well as a welcome drink. Call +1.345.547.9208 to reserve your table.

Enjoy a cosy night in at home with Carnivore’s dinner box – offering two prime cut steaks, all the sides and their signature housemade sauces, order your kit in advance to avoid disappointment. Call +1.345.640.6328 for details or to place an order.

Valentine’s Day this year falls on a Sunday, so book your reservation for one of Camana Bay’s brunches, whether it’s a dim sum brunch at Mizu Asian Bistro + Bar, barbecue brunch at KARoo, Pranzo della Nonna at Agua, The Brooklyn Pizza + Pasta’s a-la-carte brunch, or Carnivore’s all-day breakfast. Or start the Valentine’s Day celebrations a day early with Pani Indian Kitchen’s Saturday brunch.

Find the perfect gift

Give the gift of relaxation with one of Eclipze Hair Design & Day Spa’s special pampering packages. Purchase one of the spa’s three gift packages on 6 February and receive a free 15-minute chair or Thai foot massage. Packages range in pricing from CI$130 to $220. Call +1.345.945.1188 for more information.


Grant Thornton Cayman Islands expands their Graduate Program with two new young Caymanians

Grant Thornton are delighted to announce the expansion of their two newest members on the graduate program, for their ever-growing audit, tax and advisory practice in the Cayman Islands. The Graduate program is a successful program totalling of 10 Caymanian graduates.

Dara Keogh, Managing Partner of Grant Thornton in the Cayman Islands said ‘We are very proud of our graduate program and see it as one of our critical success factors. The graduate program, enables us to attract fresh talent to the firm and, provide young Caymanians an opportunity to qualify as Professional Accountants with the right kind of structured support. This will include a financial grant, industry training and fantastic career prospects, from a global brand with a significant local footprint.’

We recognise that these Islands are home to a pool of high-calibre talent and our firm is committed to offering a great start by developing ambitious Caymanian students into young ambitious professionals. This announcement demonstrates our commitment to the continued growth of our organisation and our development of the local student community.’

The recipients of the 2020 program are 22-year-old Alyssa McLaughlin and 19-year old Nicole Malyk. Alyssa has graduated with Cum Laude Honors Bachelor of Science in Accounting from University of Tampa. Alyssa is currently studying her Master of Accounting, as she continues to progress Alyssa will then complete her CPA, whilst working at Grant Thornton. Nicole Malyk is currently pursuing her bachelor’s degree in Accounting then thereafter Master and CPA.

‘I’m very excited to have been given the opportunity to join Grant Thornton as it will enable me to gain the experience and unlock growth within the firm. Grant Thornton is the place I want to work’. Alyssa stated. Grant Thornton is where I always dreamed to be. It is great to be part of the fastest growing firm on Island, that looks out for young Caymanians and help me excel to my highest potential. Thanks, Grant Thornton, for the wonderful opportunity.’ said Nicole.

Applications for 2021 program places will open in Spring 2021, with more information available at grantthornton.ky.


NAU Continues Support for Districts

The Needs Assessment Unit (NAU) is extending its pilot programme “NAU is in Our District,” which rolled out on 11 and 18 December 2020.

Designed to improve access to NAU services by persons in district communities, the initiative will visit the districts for the next six months as planned. Persons who need assistance with their NAU application, or any other NAU-type issue, are advised to attend and bring supporting documentation along with them.

East End Civic Centre

9 am – 2 pm

Friday, 8 January 2021
Friday, 5 February 2021
Friday,5 March 2021
Friday, 9 April 2021
Friday, 7 May 2021
Friday, 4 June 2021
North Side Public Library

10 am – 1 pm

Friday, 15 January 2021
Friday, 12 February 2021
Friday, 12 March 2021
Friday, 16 April 2021
Friday, 14 May 2021
Friday, 11 June 2021

 

Bodden Town Public Library

10 am – 1 pm

Friday, 22 January 2021
Friday, 19 February 2021
Friday, 19 March 2021
Friday, 23 April 2021
Friday, 21 May 2021
Friday, 18 June 2021

 

West Bay Public Library

10 am – 1 pm

Friday, 29 January 2021
Friday, 26 February 2021
Friday, 26 March 2021
Friday, 30 April 2021
Friday, 28 May 2021
Friday, 25 June 2021

 


High praise for Mourant in Legal 500 Caribbean

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Teams from across Mourant’s British Virgin Islands (BVI) and Cayman Islands practices have been recognized in the 2021 edition of Legal 500 Caribbean, maintaining consistently high rankings achieved in recent years. In total, 22 of the firm’s lawyers have been recognised for their expertise in this year’s guide.

Legal 500 is one of the world’s leading legal directories, which ranks law firms following a thorough independent research process, including interviews with clients and peers as well as information provided by the firms themselves.

In the Cayman Islands, the Mourant Dispute Resolution practice maintained its top tier ranking, a position it has held for the last seven years. Clients praised the team as having “Superb client care, top legal capabilities” and being “exceptionally thorough and top of their game”, overall “fantastic to work with”.

Tier two rankings were maintained across the board by the Cayman Banking, Finance & Capital Markets, Corporate & Commercial and Investment Funds teams. In the Regulatory and Compliance section, the firm debut in tier two.

Managing Partner Hayden Isbister said: “We’re really pleased to have received such excellent feedback from our clients in this year’s guide and to once again see so many of our people recognised for their hard work and commitment to providing outstanding levels of service. I’m particularly proud to see our regulatory team achieve such strong recognition in the first year of this new ranking criteria, as they put their knowledge and experience to use in helping our clients to navigate an increasingly complex regulatory landscape.

“I’d like to thank those clients and contacts who took the time to provide such positive feedback on our services, and congratulate our team on this well-deserved achievement.”

Clients spoke highly of the “very responsive and commercial-minded” Banking and Finance team, who “understand the complexities of cross-border transactions”. The “very knowledgeable team of professionals” in the Corporate and Commercial practice was recognized for its “personable approach to a relationship” and “responsiveness to inquires and proactive approached to identify issues real-time, or even before they emerge”. One client commented that “the care that is put into knowing their client beyond just the work arena, which creates a high degree of trust that facilitates a sense that we are working together to create a success for both Mourant and the client”.

The Investment Funds team was praised as being “a team of offshore advisors that can provide cutting edge resources, market views and solve complex structural issues”, with clients noting that “this team provide excellent legal advice and client service”. The Regulatory and Compliance practice offers “professionalism, competence, practical approach to solving problems” with a “very strong team that can be relied on to work through any issues”.

Partners Hayden Isbister, Alex Last, Hector Robinson QC, Neal Lomax, Peter Hayden, Ramesh Maharaj, Sara Galletly and Simon Dickson were all listed as ‘Leading Individuals’, while Alexandra Woodcock, Catherine Pham and Nicholas Fox were listed as ‘Next Generation Partners’. Finn Howie, Gemma Cowan and Nathaniel Luker were all recognized as ‘Rising Stars’.


UK, Territories Joint Ministerial Council meeting begins Monday

The United Kingdom and British Overseas Territories’ Joint Ministerial Council meeting, which is held annually in London, will be held via video conference beginning Monday, 23 November 2020. Premier Hon. Alden McLaughlin, together with various Ministers and other officials, will attend the meetings.

The JMC brings together political leaders from the British Overseas Territories (OTs) and United Kingdom Ministers and this year kicks off with an opening welcome from Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

OT and UK leaders will discuss measures they have taken to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic and the way forward, including vaccines.

Following that discussion, Premier McLaughlin is scheduled to speak about amendments to the Cayman Islands Constitution, which were assented to by the Privy Council on 11 November 2020.

The session will wrap up on Monday with a discussion about border security challenges.

Topics for discussion on Tuesday through Thursday include:

• Economic Resilience in small, open island economies against the backdrop of COVID-19 and other economic shocks
• EU Exit and its impacts, including funding, market access and mobility
• Issues concerning free trade agreements and international trade
• Protecting the vulnerable, specifically focusing on mental health, domestic abuse and children
• Environmental protection and funding with the Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
• COP26 opportunities and engagement in the UN Climate Change Conference being hosted by the UK in 2021

The conference ends Thursday afternoon. JMC meets once a year to provide a forum for the exchange of views on political and constitutional issues between the governments of the Overseas Territories and the UK Government.

Joining the Premier for this year’s conference will be members of Cabinet.


Cayman Islands Constitution changes take effect 3 December

The Cayman Islands Constitution (Amendment) Order 2020, which the Privy Council approved on 11 November 2020, comes into effect on Thursday, 3 December 2020, the day prior to the State Opening and first sitting of Parliament.

The Order makes several amendments to the Cayman Islands Constitution as negotiated between the Cayman Islands and the United Kingdom. These amendments were debated and unanimously approved in the Legislative Assembly in December 2019.

Amongst other things, the amendments change the name of the Legislative Assembly to Parliament; abolish the Governor’s power of disallowance of locally-enacted legislation; remove the requirement for the Governor to approve standing orders made by the Parliament; make clearer that the Cayman Islands has the autonomous capacity with respect to domestic affairs; remove the Governor’s exemption from a duty to consult the Cabinet but defines a certain exception to this; provide for Parliamentary Secretaries and a Police Service Commission, and provide an obligation for the UK Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs to notify the Premier of proposed Acts of the UK Parliament that would extend directly to the Cayman Islands or Orders in Council extending any provisions of an Act of the UK Parliament to the Cayman Islands so that the Cabinet can provide its views on proposed changes.


DCI Launches Online System for DNFBPs

The Department of Commerce and Investment (DCI) has launched a new online system for Designated Non-Financial Business and Professions (DNFBPs) to facilitate various interactions between the Department and DNFBPs for regulatory and compliance support.

The DNFBPs that are under DCI’s regulatory supervision include real estate agents, real estate brokers, property developers, dealers in precious metals and dealers in precious stones.

The online system, which is accessible at www.dci.gov.ky, allows DNFBPs to register online, update information and submit documents such as transactions reports. The system, which will be used to manage registrations, desktop reviews and administrative fines, will also function as a mechanism for communication between DCI and DNFBPs.

Director of DCI, Ryan Rajkumarsingh noted that part of DCI’s obligations to the Caribbean Financial Action Task Force is for the Department to ensure that regulated industries are compliant or are taking steps to achieve compliance with the requirements established under the anti-money laundering regulations.

“We are committed to providing all the required support to ensure compliance and also maintaining continuous communication with our customers. We will continue to improve our services. We look forward to partnership on these goals and hope that our customers will reap the benefits of this innovative way of doing business” said Mr Rajkumarsingh.

Head of Compliance and Enforcement at DCI, Claudia Brady noted that the new system is designed to be convenient and less time consuming to customers. “It will facilitate efficient and secure interactions between DCI and DNFBPs. This is part of our continued efforts to improve customer service as we strive to be a world-class civil service and also protect the reputation of the Cayman Islands”, she said.

The project to deliver the new online system was managed by the E-Government Unit in the Ministry of Commerce, Planning and Infrastructure.

Director of E-Government Unit, Ian Tibbetts highlighted that the Unit continues to expand government services online. Currently, 96% of company registrations, annual returns and director changes are now being done digitally. In a few days, the Unit will also launch an online system to allow persons to apply for naturalisation or registration as British Overseas Territories Citizen, as well as a system to facilitate submissions for publishing in the Gazettes.

Other online projects recently delivered by the E-Government Unit include the Department of Vehicle and Drivers’ Licensing renewal service for guest users and the DCI’s trade and business licence online service which allows business owners to apply or renew their licences online. Over the past three months, approximately 74% of all trade and business transactions were done online.

“These services have transformed the way our customers can now do business with the Cayman Islands Government and forms a key part of our strategy to deliver more efficient services to the businesses and the general public,” Mr Tibbetts said.

To accommodate DNFBPs that do not have online access, the DCI will continue to accept hard copies of applications until all DNFBPs are added to the new system. Documents should be submitted to the Department of Commerce and Investment counter at the Government Administration Building.

Members of the public can contact the compliance section of DCI via email at compliance@dci.gov.ky.

 


Cayman Connection to host virtual Christmas event to support Caymanians overseas

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Cayman Connection, supported by the Cayman Islands Government Office in the UK (CIGOUK) and the Friends of Cayman group, is hosting a series of virtual Christmas events for Caymanians overseas this December.

The main event is scheduled to be a virtual Christmas Caymanian culture gathering on Friday 18 December, including a partnership with Caymanian Chef Chad Scott, from GogoCarib, who will be making traditional Caymanian dishes delivered as holiday meals across the UK. And for dessert, rum cakes will accompany these holiday meals, thanks to Tortuga Rum Cakes which has also joined this special effort.

The event, sponsored by offshore law firm Mourant, brings together Caymanians who are staying overseas for Christmas and those at home in Cayman, connecting Caymanians across the Atlantic. The event will start with Christmas performances by Caymanians in London and Manchester, spoken word poetry by a student in Liverpool, Cayman Christmas storytelling with Rita Estevanovich and a performance by steel pan performer Olujimi “Jimmeh” La Pierre in Cayman, to bring a slice of home to those overseas. Hosted by Jevaughnie Ebanks, entertainment will be followed by Christmas games and virtual social engagement to bring some comfort to those far from home.

Chef Chad Scott said “It was perfect timing to be approached by Cayman Connection, as I am relaunching my catering company GogoCarib and I am very happy to serve up food to Caymanians overseas at Christmas time. I am honoured to be a part of this network and event and pleased to be able to share my food and new brand. I am grateful for the promotion and support from Cayman Connection.”

André Ebanks, commented “The holiday season in the UK and Europe will certainly be different this year. But that does not mean that it cannot be made to feel as warm, caring, and festive as possible. In fact, current circumstances provide even more reason to do so. So with the holiday season swiftly approaching, CIGOUK relished the opportunity to think creatively with Cayman Connection and the Friends of Cayman group to bring Caymanians staying in the UK and Europe for the holiday season a tasteful and touching slice of home; while we all look forward to a promising new year.”

Hector Robinson QC, Partner at Mourant, said: “We’re really pleased to be able to support this event and Cayman Connection. This year has been particularly challenging for everyone, especially those who have been kept apart from loved ones. We’re so glad we can help play a part in providing some joyful Cayman spirit for those who will be so far away from home for the Holidays. Clearly, this festive season will be different to what is normal for many families, but we’re hoping events like this will still be able to bring everyone together for some good cheer.”

Caymanians around the world can join the virtual event by visiting www.caymanconnection.org/christmas2020 or can email hello@caymanconnection.org for more information. Christmas event meals will be for UK guests only and free for the first 30 UK-based Cayman Connection members to RSVP. Extra and non-member meals in the UK can be purchased for £25 per person. RSVP by 04 December 2020.