Cayman Islands–United States relations

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Cayman Islands – United States relations
Map indicating locations of Cayman Islands and USA

Cayman Islands

United States

Cayman Islands – United States relations are bilateral relations between the Cayman Islands and the United States.

Although the United Kingdom is responsible for the Cayman Islands' defense and external affairs, important bilateral issues are often resolved by negotiations between the Cayman Government and foreign governments, including the United States. Despite close historic and political links to the U.K. and Jamaica, geography and the rise of tourism and international finance in the Cayman Islands' economy has made the United States its most important foreign economic partner. Following a dip in tourists from the United States after September 11, 2001 attacks, over 200,000 U.S. citizens traveled by air to the Cayman Islands in 2004; some 4,761 Americans were resident there as of 2005.

For U.S. and other foreign investors and businesses, the Cayman Islands' main appeal as a financial center is the absence of all major direct taxes, free capital movement, a minimum of government regulations, and a well-developed financial infrastructure.

With the rise in international narcotics trafficking, the Cayman Government entered into the Narcotics Agreement of 1984 and the Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty of 1986 with the United States in order to reduce the use of its facilities for money laundering operations. In June 2000, the Cayman Islands was listed by multilateral organizations as a tax haven and a non-cooperative territory in fighting money laundering. The country's swift response in enacting laws limiting banking secrecy, introducing requirements for customer identification and record keeping, and for banks to cooperate with foreign investigators led to its removal from the list of non-cooperative territories in June 2001.

U.S. representation[edit]

The United States does not maintain diplomatic offices in the Cayman Islands. Diplomatic relations are conducted through the U.S. Embassy in London and the British Embassy in Washington, D.C.

The Cayman Islands are, however, part of the consular district administered by the U.S. Embassy in Kingston, Jamaica. There also is a U.S. consular agent in George Town on Grand Cayman to assist in providing services for American citizens.

References[edit]

 This article incorporates public domain material from websites or documents of the United States Department of State (Background Notes).[1]