The Bahamas Financial Services Board (BFSB) recently launched an initiative that complements the work of Bahamian practitioners who interact with intermediaries and other opinion leaders regarding the financial services industry of The Bahamas.

This is the Special Programme for Intermediaries in Nassau (SPIN). Through SPIN, key intermediaries are invited to The Bahamas on an expense-paid trip, for the express purpose of building stronger relationships with Bahamian institutions and regulators. BFSB strongly believes that such information exchanges are vitally important to maintain confidence and support for the jurisdiction, and to reaffirm the strength of The Bahamas in some of the primary markets for business.

BFSB, in collaboration with the Association of International Banks & Trust Companies (AIBT), hosted its first SPIN last week, concentrating on Private Wealth Management (PWM). The PWM SPIN included a number of Bahamas presentations and other functions allowing interaction with Bahamas Government representatives and Industry Regulators.

The programme was opened by the Hon. Perry G. Christie, who spoke to the Government’s ongoing commitment to the development of the financial services sector. The Hon. Allyson Maynard-Gibson, Minister of Financial Services and Investments, also addressed SPIN participants, as did the Hon. Fred Mitchell, Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Hon. Alfred Sears, Attorney General and Minister of Education. The consistent message provided to visiting financial service experts was that The Bahamas is open for business and that it intends to maintain its position as a premier international financial services centre, operating according to international best practices and standards.

Other public sector presenters, who joined an impressive array of industry practitioners also addressing the forum, included Governor Julian Francis of the Central Bank of the Bahamas, and Michael Halkitis and Rowena Bethel, Parliamentary Secretary and Legal Advisor, respectively, at the Ministry of Finance. Sir Joaquim C. Gonsalves-Sabola, Former Chief Justice, spoke to SPIN participants on litigation issues affecting the sector.

BFSB’s CEO & Executive Director Wendy C. Warren says, *”Seeing is believing”*. That is why the organisation invited these key intermediaries to see for themselves why The Bahamas has become one of the world’s leading financial centres with a continued commitment to private wealth management. She also indicated that,*” While the visitors were here they were given the opportunity to experience the wonderful Bahamian lifestyle and BFSB arranged several social events that helped them appreciate why The Bahamas has not only become a destination of choice for millions of vacationers but also a location of choice for many individuals seeking to relocate or invest in second properties.”*