After the phenomenal success of our expansion into Monaco (2017) and Dubai (2018), the Enness team is excited to be expanding our offering further by opening an office in Jersey. At first glance, the rolling green hills and temperate weather of the largest Channel Island might tempt you into thinking it’s a sleepy seaside location. But don’t be fooled; with a quarter of the population employed in financial services, what it lacks in size, it makes up for in its clout as an international finance centre.
We sat down with the team at Jersey Finance to find out more about what the island has to offer, and how it can benefit international investors.
What sets Jersey apart?
Jersey is one of the world’s leading international finance centres. It’s forward thinking approach, and robust regulatory framework, are enhanced by political and economic stability. This has kept the jurisdiction at the forefront of global finance for more than 50 years. It has a unique constitutional position, as although its allegiance is to the British Crown, it is not a part of the UK and is not represented in the British Houses of Parliament. The island’s domestic autonomy has been preserved via charter and convention through 800 years of English history.
The industry’s primary focus is in the key sectors of banking, fund services, wealth management and capital markets, including the specialist sectors of Fintech, Islamic Finance and Philanthropy.
This comprehensive range of products and services, combined with a highly-skilled expert workforce and award-winning credentials, gives an unparalleled welcome to global investors. Jersey offers a tax-neutral environment, with no Capital Transfer Tax, Value Added Tax, Withholding Taxes or Wealth Taxes. This has created a stable financial system with encourages fiscally efficient cross-border investment.
Jersey’s tax model simply allows investors to work together more efficiently. They pay tax in their own countries, and in the country they invest in, without complex cross-border taxation issues and red tape. The authorities abide by all international money laundering regulations, ensuring they know exactly where all the money in Jersey has come from, and exactly where it is going. They also work with the relevant regulatory bodies to ensure that all tax obligations are fulfilled.
A focus on transparency
The thing that sets Jersey apart from other international finance centres is its strong regulatory framework, designed to bring clarity and transparency to the world of finance. Jersey remains one of the best regulated finance centres, a position that has been acknowledged by independent assessments from leading bodies including the OECD, World Bank and IMF. In 2016, Jersey was subject to a Mutual Evaluation by MONEYVAL and was found to be “Compliant” or “Largely Compliant” with 48 out of 49 of the FATF Recommendations. This is the highest score amongst all states assessed.
The island has also signed up to numerous co-operation and information sharing mechanisms. These include the Base Erosion Profit Shifting (BEPS) project and Common Reporting Standards (CRS) initiative. Jersey also has a central register of beneficial ownership that meets international standards and is party to 52 international tax agreements (39 TIEAs and 13 DTAs), helping facilitate the sharing of information with tax authorities around the world. These arrangements also help build long term business relationships with those countries and are also a reflection of Jersey’s commitment to comply with international standards.
Why have we selected Jersey?
We think that Enness can add long term value and become an important part of the Jersey financial services community. Increasing regulation, complexity and fragmentation of the international lending market makes the process of finding the correct, or indeed any mortgage, increasingly time consuming.
We have strong relations with over 300 global lenders. Managing nearly £1bn of mortgage applications (for 77 nationalities) last year, Enness can bring certainty, access and solutions to almost all real estate funding requirements. We offer a centralised real estate debt function across multiple jurisdictions and asset classes which can solve almost any mortgage related challenges. Our strong relationship with some of the leading local trust companies, law firms and accountants offers a great foundation for ever closer co-operation in the future.
How will the Jersey office be set up?
Enness (Jersey) Limited will be headed by Mike Gray as principle representative. We will soon start recruiting locally to build a team of mortgage brokers to service the Channel Islands. We aspire to be a physical part of the community, contributing to the sector and bringing new clients, lenders and innovation to the market.
Our senior management, in the shape of Hugh and Islay, have committed significant time to be in the islands meeting with stakeholders and clients alike. We look forward to writing this new chapter in our future and see Jersey as a key part of our long term expansion plans.