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Slow news month in Gibraltar ..29th August 2017

It has been the usual summer of small beer in terms of news in and around Gibraltar. As with much of the "med" the summer is too hot to get too busy and public sector workers on the whole close their doors around 2pm. The private sector does continue much like the rest of the business world so you can be sure of getting your call answered, especially at the Acquarius Trust Group between 8.30am and 5.30pm Mon to Friday CET.

To slate your thirst here are some small snippets of news that might help courtesy of the Telegraph, Independant and our personal favourite the Gibraltar Chronicle...

Gibraltar's Minister for Commerce, Albert Isola, has announced Protected Cell Companies (PCC) will be permitted to write third-party insurance business.

Prior to the announcement, third-party business was permitted under Gibraltar's PCC legislation but regulatory permission had been restricted. Earlier this year, Gibraltar's financial services regulator, the Gibraltar Financial Services Commission, undertook a review and concluded that third-party business could be permitted within Gibraltar PCCs, provided there were appropriate safeguards in place.

Commenting on the change, Isola said: "[The] Government fully supports the Commission's view that cells writing third-party business will need particularly close scrutiny and the cell's assets and reinsurance program will be crucial in determining if such business can be authorized. The approach to new applications will be heavily reliant on the quality of the business plan, the quality of the people and organizations involved, and a robust and comprehensive regulatory process. If all these aspects are satisfied then we are confident that Gibraltar PCCs can offer a flexible and secure platform for new third-party insurance business."

The Protected Cell Company is an entity designed to encourage growth of the captive insurance industry by bringing together captive promoters under a single corporate entity, while allowing assets to be segregated for satisfying third-party claims and limiting liability. Gibraltar was the first EU jurisdiction to introduce PCC legislation in 2001, and Gibraltar cells have been widely used for both cell captives and fronting cells. Since 2015 Gibraltar's insurance linked securities transactions have also been structured using PCC cells.


Brexit as always is in the headlines 96% of Gibraltar voted to stay in the EU solidarity with Britain means we must exit, the concern is the level of spin from the camps instead of the evidence of detail ....

Barnier says ...

The UK has been told by the EU’s chief Brexit negotiator that it needs to take withdrawal talks “seriously”. Michel Barnier used the opening of a third round of talks in Brussels to insist that London must end “ambiguity” regarding key positions like the Brexit divorce bill.
He said: “To be honest, I’m concerned, time passes quickly. “We need UK positions on all separation issues. This is necessary to make sufficient progress. We must start negotiating seriously. We need UK papers that are clear in order to have constructive negotiations. And the sooner we remove the ambiguity, the sooner we will be in a position to discuss the future relationship and a transitional period. I am ready to intensify negotiations over the coming weeks in order to advance.”

Meanwhile in other papers David Davis is set to go on the attack against a stubborn EU (Barnier) ....
Mr Davis insists issues like exit bills and the Irish border cannot be fully assessed until the future shape of wider relations between post-Brexit Britain and the EU is known and he is believed to be refusing to say what the UK might be prepared to pay.
Underlining British irritation at Mr Barnier's high-handed attitude, UK sources close to the talks were said to have denounced his opening remarks about ambiguity as "inconsistent, ill-judged, ill-considered and unhelpful for the next round of negotiations".

Finally another warning about the use of social media ...

An ‘online seductress’ has struck again and duped two middle-aged local men into a blackmail scam for cash. The Royal Gibraltar Police is investigating the incidents and yesterday warned the public not to reply to strangers on social media. The incidents occur when the men accept a Facebook ‘friend request’ from an unknown woman. The pair will begin to talk online and converse on webcam. The fraudster will then record the exchange and through editing will attempt to make it seem as though the victim was partaking in indecent acts.
The fraudster will them blackmail the victim with threats to leak the video online unless they front the cash. This is not the first time that local men have fallen for the scam. But the scope of the online crime has widened, according to the RGP, and the fraudsters are now targeting men and women of all ages. Women are being targeted differently, with the scammer attempting to befriend their target, then needing cash for fake medical costs. When the target refuses the fraudster will then blackmail and threaten in an attempt to extort some cash.
At the core of the advice the RGP has issued is not to accept any friend requests on Facebook from unknown accounts.  “This type of cyber enabled crime is the work of organised criminal networks,” said Detective Superintendent Ian McGrail, head of the RGP’s Crime and Protective Services Division. “We want to reach out to victims so that they know that they are not alone. We can operate in a confidential environment, offer support and detailed advice.”
“The wave of activity we have detected of late targets both male and female victims and our message is don’t feel flattered by receiving online communications from very nice looking human beings.”
“If it’s too good to be true, it’s probably not. You are not communicating with the person you may think you are communicating with, but rather with a rogue and mean criminal operating the key boards with the sole purpose of obtaining financial gain.”
Be careful with those keyboards out there.



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