Jersey Finance Chairman, Jonathan White visited the UAE earlier this month to lead the meeting of the ‘Jersey Advisory Group’ (JAG), created with the aim of enhancing Jersey’s reputation in the Gulf region.

The advisory group consists of a number of senior individuals, all based in the region, including regional banking heads, wealth management advisers, senior partners at major law firms and corporate listings experts.

JAG meetings have now taken place in India, China and the Gulf this autumn. It is envisaged that the groups will meet regularly to discuss and provide expert on-the-ground advice on Jersey’s representative efforts, business development activities and networking opportunities in these key target markets.

Also during the three day visit on behalf of Jersey Finance, Jonathan White visited a number of businesses in the region including Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank, where his meeting with the Chief Financial Officer, Deepak Khullar, coincided with the one year anniversary of the bank establishing its first branch in Jersey.

In addition, in his capacity as chairman of Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust, Jonathan White visited two conservation projects in the area – ‘The Breeding Centre for Endangered Arabian Wildlife’ in Sharjah, and the ‘Mohammed bin Zayed Species Conservation Fund’ in Abu Dhabi.

Durrell Chief Executive, Paul Masterton commented: ‘”The Trust respects and values the commitment shown by the UAE to address the world’s biodiversity challenge. Our collaborative relationships in the region are increasingly important, including the provision of conservation training and receiving much needed funding from the Mohammed bin Zayed fund.

“Jersey Finance and Durrell are both unique aspects of Jersey and we work well together to develop the island’s international relationships,” he added.

Commenting on the trip, Jonathan White said: “The Gulf Region ‘Jersey Advisory Group’ will be extremely helpful as we seek to expand our presence in this market. This influential group has a wealth of knowledge, which will help us to further enhance Jersey’s reputation.

“With 13% of all deposits in Jersey emanating from the Middle East, it is important to nurture these relationships. Our endeavours have already started to produce results and the JAG is helping to foster even stronger ties with both officials and finance professionals, increasing business flows to Jersey from the Gulf region”, he added.