Offshore Banking Cayman
The Cayman Islands are recognized as the 5th largest financial center in terms of its liabilities and ranks 6th, as a result of assets held. And Cayman’s financial center success continues despite the fact that the Cayman Islands have engaged in several divisive international agreements, with the US and other countries to ensure there is exchange of information to reveal illegal money laundering and other financial crimes that can sometime occur in offshore financial centers.
Offshore banks in the Cayman Islands are locally regulated by Cayman Islands Monetary Authority, (CIMA), and CIMA ensures the business of financial sector and institutions is governed more strictly than ever before.
The Cayman Islands financial sector is insistent on actively partaking in the fight against financial crime and the regulations and processes enforced ensure that its financial sector operates within the legislative boundaries. As a result of the heavy and strict regulations set upon offshore financial institutions in Cayman Islands, including due diligence and the KnowYourCustomer policy, it is sometimes much easier to open an account elsewhere than in the Cayman Islands. The KYC policy expects banks and other financial institutions to know as much as they can about the clients applying for their services. But consequently, some clients find that opening a bank account in Cayman is more difficult than opening an account in North America or Europe.
Another deterrent in offshore banking in the Cayman Islands is the Mutual Legal Assistance treaty of 1986 and the more recent agreements signed between the USA and the Cayman Islands which binds each to exchange financial information on suspect accounts or money from suspect sources such as drug or terrorist financing or gains. The Cayman Islands offshore sector has over the years proven it has a zero tolerance policy on gains derived from illegal activities. As proof, the Cayman Islands also have entered agreement and adhere to regulations set by international bodies with the goal to govern international financial and banking.
It is thought by many financial analyst and critics of Cayman financial systems, that their compliance with such international regulations will undermine the economic growth of the financial sector in the islands but some on the other side of the fence argue that rather than negatively impact this progress towards legitimate financial development and management, it will in fact fuel the growth of the financial services industry and enhance the integrity of the Cayman Islands as a high level international offshore financial and banking center. Because Cayman complies with the international regulators and policies, it is classified by such economic and financial agencies as a top financial jurisdiction.
Cayman Island offshore banking is available to anyone, and everyone is subject to heavy personal scrutiny prior to making any deposit into a Cayman offshore account. Cayman offshore accounts are held by non-resident individuals and groups (companies) as well as permanent and temporary residents. The obvious tax benefits and the more competitive interest rates are two of the characteristic of Cayman offshore bank accounts that attract investors. The Cayman Islands is free of exchange controls, and therefore allowing any currency transactions. Such features combines with confidentiality, progressive and supportive legislation in a stable country all help investors. The initial deposit amount for personal offshore account in Cayman Island offshore banks floats around USD5000, considered a relatively small deposit compared to other offshore jurisdiction where banks require a minimum of US300K. Large cash deposits are not accepted, especially as a first deposit. Most first deposits will have to be paid into the account via wire, check or bankers draft.