Press release from the Bahamas Financial Services Board on Tuesday 5 October, 2021.
Following a general election in The Bahamas on September 16th Senator Hon. Michael Halkitis was appointed as Minister of Economic Affairs with responsibility for financial services. In his first address to the industry at Bahamas Financial Services Board’s Annual General Meeting, Minister Halkitis said, “As the second pillar of our economy, bolstering the financial services industry must be placed at the highest priority. We will continue to identify and leverage niches where we can be most competitive while remaining proactive about our response to ever-evolving global standards and regulations.”
The Minister said the new administration intends to deliver a more diverse economy through investments in technology, renewable energy, sustainable tourism, and the green, blue, and orange economies. “Within the Financial Services sector itself, now is the time for industry partners to progressively harness profitable niches,” he said.
“Widespread access to emerging opportunities within these growing sectors will be essential to moving this country forward along a path of exponential growth and progress.
He indicated that the government will do its part in spurring innovation through our own digitization and ease of doing business efforts, which my Ministry will lead the charge on. “We will roll out the technologies that will allow government services to be as efficient and effective as possible, while introducing policies that will empower entrepreneurs rather than impeding them with bureaucracy and red tape.”
In commenting on work that was done during a Policy Action Summit held earlier this year he said the recommendations made related to the ease of doing business and digitization, mitigation of the impact of international initiatives, reforms to the Registrar General, and rebranding of the jurisdiction, among others, align with the ultimate objectives of his Ministry and this administration to introduce much-needed reforms to promote economic growth and resilience.
“As we move forward with the development and execution of our substantive policy agenda, it is recommendations like these, developed jointly between government stakeholders, the BFSB, and the private sector, that will continue to inform our work,” he said. “This is just the start of an ongoing, multifaceted dialogue between us. You can expect that we will continue to reach out and consult with our valued partners as international initiatives are addressed and policy position are taken. You can expect us to continue the events and opportunities for engagement that have become common between government and private sector stakeholders over the last two years.”