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Country Reports

Cayman Islands Country Report

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Risk Level

Low
Moderate
Elevated
High
Very High
Severe
Extreme

Overview

Executive Summary

As a UK Overseas Territory, Cayman Islands internal affairs are mostly governed locally, including on tax and regulatory issues, but with close oversight from the UK government via the locally resident Governor-General, a UK appointee. External and defence issues are also overseen by the UK government. Concerns over the political and economic impact of Brexit for the Cayman Islands will remain high on the local agenda despite the extension from 10 April 2019 to 31 October 2019 of the Article 50 process leading to the UK exit from the EU. One reason for that is the potential uncertainty over how aligned UK and EU authorities will be in future over aspects of financial transparency related to the Cayman’s key financial services and offshore sectors, and to what degree that will affect the attractiveness of the territory for those sectors. Operational risks are likely to remain low compared with most regional neighbours, given general local government stability and the oversight of the UK authorities. Crime rates, including gun crime, are low and the islands are safe compared with other anglophone jurisdictions in the Caribbean. IHS Markit expects growth to slow in 2019 to 2.2%, down from 2.6% in 2018. The influence of US economic performance is key for the Cayman’s economy, including tourism flows.
Last update: May 2, 2019

Operational Outlook

The operational environment is good. Local infrastructure is modern and extensive, notably in the telecommunication sectors. The provision of utilities services is reliable. Corruption is not a major risk, although there is still capacity to promote transparency and accountability within state institutions, including the police. Bureaucratic procedures do not represent a major challenge to the private sector and authorities are committed to fostering a positive business environment at all levels. The islands have a well-educated workforce and labour-related risks are low. Natural hazards may hit the islands, but overall the government's level of preparedness is adequate.

Last update: January 25, 2019

Terrorism

There is no specific terrorist threat targeting the Cayman Islands assets from domestic or home-grown groups or targeting Western interests such as bars, nightclubs, shops, restaurants, or other places where expats and tourists may gather.

Last update: May 24, 2018

War Risks

As a British Overseas territory, the Cayman Islands' foreign affairs and defence policy remain the responsibility of the UK government. Overall, there are no significant external threats to the island and interstate war risks are low.

Last update: May 24, 2018

Social Stability

There are no significant trade unions in the Cayman Islands, so strike action is virtually non-existent. Any future incidents of industrial action would be quickly resolved and would not pose property damage risks. In October 2015, environmental activists held protests to oppose a new cruise berthing facility in Georgetown, and future tourism projects could be subject to similar protests if they are perceived to have an adverse effect on the natural environment. Other protest groups have staged demonstrations in the past to demand lower petrol prices.

Last update: May 24, 2018