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Gulf visit completed

27 April 2012

Treasury Minister, Senator Philip Ozouf, has completed a series of meetings in Abu Dhabi and Dubai aimed at securing further business with the Gulf region. The visit was part of a series of initiatives by ministers to promote the Island throughout 2012.

Following his visit, Senator Ozouf issued the following statement: “I am very pleased with the progress that the Jersey Finance representative office in Abu Dhabi has made over the past 12 months. The team there has helped secure solid business flows for Jersey business and developed key contacts, which were fully utilised during my time in the region this week.

“One of the main objectives of my visit had been to call on Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank (ADCB), whose Jersey branch is currently hosted by AIB. I met the Chief Executive Officer and other senior executives from the bank, together with Sean Costello from Jersey Finance, Abu Dhabi.

“I was pleased to learn of the success of the branch to date and the bank's continued strong commitment to Jersey. I was advised that the bank is working through a number of options to ensure they continue their presence in Jersey.

“We have committed to providing all possible assistance to maintain the branch in Jersey which will secure jobs and help continued growth in this key market. I emphasised the significance of ADCB's presence in Jersey as an award-winning Gulf bank and agreed to continue the dialogue to ensure that a transition arrangement can be found.

“The receptions that I spoke at on behalf of Jersey were very well attended and helped to further raise Jersey's profile at the highest level in the UAE, including with the British Ambassador to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and the Consul General in Dubai. The showcasing of the holographic portrait ‘Equanimity’ at 2 key events was a unique opportunity for us to demonstrate both our commitment to The Crown and our growing relationship with the UAE. Our image of the Queen is a powerful symbol, reinforcing the heritage of our jurisdiction.

“This week’s news of a double-dip recession in the UK and of job losses at HSBC further emphasises the need for Jersey to continue to diversify its markets geographically. We began this strategy 10 years ago in the UAE. We now have significant business from this region and there is more for us to secure.

“As the financial crisis continues in Europe, it is even more important that we redouble our efforts to extend Jersey’s market share in the regions that are seeing growth, especially in the finance and digital sectors. Investment of energy, time and resources is essential for us to boost business and create jobs in Jersey.”

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