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Isle of Man Economy Set to Improve by the End of 2009

As around 700 students collect their A-Level results on the Isle of Man, many will be considering their next step – either to apply for university on the mainland or to remain on the island and look for a job. Although the recession is not drawing many youngsters to the prospect of looking for work in the UK, recent developments within the unique Manx economy is causing some commentators to speak quite optimistically about the coming year.

Of course much of the Isle of Man economy is centred around its financial sector, and its offshore banking and savings accounts are some of the best to be found in Europe. Its establishment as a major financial centre is due to the island’s government proposed incentive to bring business to the island via lower taxes, a proposition that has continued from the mid-sixties to this day.

Lower taxes did not only bring new business to the island (that lies just a short distance from both England and Ireland), many wealthier residents also began to arrive in order to benefit – leading to a great number of banks establishing themselves on the island also.

For an island that is so dependant on its banking sector, it is no surprise that along with the recession, rumours of a ‘Great Depression’ scenario began to circulate – which was probably not helped by the almighty collapse of the Iceland economy as well as the near failure of Switzerland’s biggest bank UBS. This month, however, according to finance specialist and MD of Barclays Private Clients International, Greg Ellison, the island’s economy is set to improve within the year.

According to Isle of Man Today, Barclays are the biggest employer on the island with over 800 staff. Ellison commented: “While the economic climate has made the last 12 months the most challenging in recent history, at Barclays Wealth we've weathered the storm very well.”

The words will be a welcome breath of fresh air to those living on the island, as well as those considering that they could benefit from an offshore savings account with an Isle of Man bank. Students who may choose to stay on the island after their A-Level results will no doubt be a little more optimistic now too, and if Ellison is right then the stability of the Manx government during such a tough time will be something for all islanders to be proud of also.


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