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AIC calls for MPs to be thorough in offshore inquiry

The Association of Investment Companies has called on the Treasury Select Committee not to tarr all offshore centres with the same brush.

In its response to the TSC’s inquiry into the conduct of offshore financial centres, the AIC claims centres such as the Channel Islands offer high standards and can secure significant benefits for consumers.

Director general Daniel Godfrey urges the MPs to conduct a thorough inquiry and recognise that not all offshore centres or the activities carried out offshore are the same.

He says: “The last thing we want to see are misgivings about poor practice in one location distorting views and leading to all offshore centres being tarred with the same brush when, in reality, territories such as the Channel Islands offer extremely high standards.”

The UK tax regime has not kept up with the evolving needs of the sector, according to Godfrey who says this has allowed centres like the Channel Islands to offer attractive and competitive alternatives. He says the Channel Islands can secure significant consumer benefits because firms can offer investment strategies that cannot be competitively delivered by a UK-based company.

Godfrey says: “Hopefully, helping MPs understand the benefits which can be delivered by locating offshore will help us achieve our overall goal of protecting the reputation of our members, ensuring that there is proper understanding of the high standards they apply offshore, and guarding against unhelpful policy interventions by the UK Government.”

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