Plans are well underway for the fourth annual Bahamas Financial Services Industry Retreat, which is scheduled to take place at the Emerald Bay Four Seasons Resort in Exuma on January 19 to 21.

The event, which is coordinated by the Bahamas Financial Services Board (BFSB), has in previous years attracted more than 100 senior Government officials, regulators and a wide cross section of industry representatives. This year is expected to be no different, with some 70 persons already registered to attend.

*“The high level of response is indicative of the strong desire and commitment by all industry stakeholders for open, ongoing and proactive dialogue on the further development of the industry,”* says Wendy Warren, BFSB’s CEO and Executive Director.

Participants will focus their attention on the strategic development of the sector. One of the major highlights of the event will be a presentation by renowned international speaker, Mr. Bruce Zagaris, who will address attendees of the plenary session on the topic: *"The Potential for Small Island Jurisdictions to Use International Agreements as a Financial Services Engine: Implications for the Bahamas"*. A roundtable panel discussion will follow with a focus on trade protocols affecting Financial Services. The Bahamas Strategy & Branding survey, released at the 2006 Retreat will also be a major focus during the plenary sessions.

Other important matters that will be discussed during small breakout sessions include Jurisdiction Brand Development, Compliance & Corporate Governance, Manpower Assessment, Capital Markets and Private Wealth Management. Retreat participants will rotate among various discussion areas with reports on each working session tabled by group leaders at the conclusion of the event.