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The opening plenary session at the annual International Business&Finance Summit(IBFS)will examine how the priorities of emerging economies are aligned with the global regulatory and transparency agenda, which has been largely driven by the G20/OECD economies. It will explore how this agenda is impacting financial institutions including profitability, risk management and plans for expansion.

Dr. Harvey Z. Chen, Chairman and CEO of First Light Academy of Finance and Management, an executive and professional education institution based in Shanghai, China, will talk about his research findings about the HNWIs(high net worth individuals) in China, and their views about investing globally. He also will address(i)capital control in China,(ii)the pending internationalization of the Chinese currency and implications for offshore financial centers; and(iii)the Chinese philosophy towards IFCs(international finance corporations).

Dr. Eduardo Gamarra, professor in the Department of Politics and International Relations in the School of International and Public Affairs at Florida International University, will address similar topics from the Latin American perspective.

Wendy Warren, CEO of the Bahamas Financial Services Board(BFSB), says the opening session for IBFS which takes place at the Radisson Our Lucaya in Freeport, Grand Bahama, on January 21-13, 2011 reflects the inevitable pull which the East is having on geopolitics and trade. Concurrently, she says,”owners of capital domiciled in the Americas are benefitting from the resource-rich economies.”

Other panelists for the opening plenary session will be Mr. Malcolm Couch, income tax assessor in the Isle of Man who represents thats jurisdiction at OECD(Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development)and European Union(EU)forums and has primary responsibilities for negotiating tax co-operation agreements; and Mrs. Rowena Bethel, legal advisor in the Bahamas Ministry of Finance, with similar representational responsibilities for The Bahamas.

Dr. Chen is a commissioner of the China State Council Overseas Chinese Affairs Office Advisory Commission, a contributor and consultant to Oxford Analytica, UK, and an independent director of the board of Bank of Montreal(China)Co. Ltd.. He speaks regularly at major international conferences such as the World Economic Forum, the European Business Leaders Convention, the World Chinese Forum, and Oxford Analytica Annual Conferences.

Dr. Gamarra’s areas of expertise include Latin American politics, democratization, and neo-populism. Between 1994 and 2007, he served as director of Florida International University’s Latin American and Caribbean Center. He is a co-founder of Hemisphere, a magazine on Latin American and Caribbean affairs as well as Newlink Political, a consulting firm dedicated to electoral and public policy campaigns throughout Latin America, and Newlink Research, a public opinion and market research firm that in partnership with the Centro Nacional de Consultoría based in Bogotá, Colombia conducts the Iberoamerican Governability Barometer, a major survey of Latin America, the Caribbean and the Iberian Peninsula. Dr. Gamarra has been a consultant to multilateral agencies, the Library of Congress, foundations, non-governmental institutions, executive branch agencies, legislatures, judiciaries, police institutions, and armed forces throughout the hemisphere.

Ms. Warren said it is critical that The Bahamas review, generally, the impact of global developments on its economy, inclusive of the financial services sector. IBFS 2011 will explore what this means, and how the national policies of The Bahamas should be deployed to fully engage the owners of capital and entrepreneurs for national development.

The theme of IBFS 2011 is”Enhancing your SCRIPT for Growth”in line with the strategy being pursued by BFSB for the development of the financial services sector: A strategy for cross-sector coordination; a proactive and pragmatic regulatory environment; a recognition that infrastructure is vital; a proactive and targeted business development strategy; and an emphasis on attracting and building a world-class talent pool.

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