Leading funds experts say that Jersey continues to be an attractive place for fund management but the island’s financial services community, politicians and regulators must give this sector real focus and support or risk losing out.

Over 160 members of Jersey’s funds management community turned out to hear a special debate hosted by law firm Appleby, entitled “Are Jersey’s Days as a Leading Fund Domicile Numbered? Reasons to be Cheerful”

During the debate, leading onshore fund lawyer Jonathan Baird of Freshfields, quizzed Jersey lawyers, Andrew Weaver and Mark Lewis members of the Appleby funds team. He raised a series of questions covering issues such as: evaluating the key competitor jurisdictions of Guernsey, Luxembourg and Cayman; the impact of the AIFMD; is Jersey’s regulatory regime to complicated?; and should Jersey focus on fund service providers not fund domiciles?

Jonathan Baird, a partner in Freshfields' London office and a member of Freshfields' financial institutions group, said: “The debate showed that Jersey remains well-positioned relative to its competitors and is in a great position to continue to strengthen its position in light of increasing international expectations and requirements. But it is clear that this won’t happen without a lot of careful thought and focused effort, both from the island’s service providers and from its politicians and regulators.”

Andrew Weaver, Appleby’s Head of Funds and Investment in Jersey, commented: “Jersey has dynamic and robust answers to all the questions raised about its capabilities and attractiveness in terms of being a top destination for the funds market. This shows that Jersey should have every confidence in what it has to offer to the funds market and industry and indeed there are many reasons to be cheerful.”