An interview with Jo Stoddart, Director of Locate Guernsey
With remote working becoming commonplace for businesses, it’s little wonder people are looking for potential new locations to live and work. Guernsey has always been a desirable destination due to its robust business infrastructure, regulatory system and natural beauty. So, what can the island offer businesses and potential residents adapting to the new normal? The European spoke to Jo Stoddart, Director of Locate Guernsey to find out more.
How have you helped potential clients during the Covid-19 pandemic?
Jo Stoddart: Fortunately, Guernsey emerged from lockdown early during the Covid-19 pandemic. The island was the first location in the British Isles to become free of the virus and has continued to minimise and eliminate infections. Relocating is often a significant life event and doing so during a pandemic has brought with it many new challenges. The Locate Guernsey team have quickly expanded their knowledge to assist clients through Covid-19 regulations and guidance.
Have enquiries for relocation remained stable during this period?
Inspired by the success the island is having managing the Covid-19 pandemic, the Locate Guernsey team has experienced an influx of new enquiries from around the world. It is encouraging that the island’s property agents are very busy and Open Market property sales are comfortably keeping pace with 2019. Life on the island has mostly returned back to pre-Covid normality with very few restrictions, which naturally carries enormous appeal.
What key advantages can Guernsey point to and offer clients compared to other jurisdictions?
Many of our prospects explain that their lockdown experiences have caused them to pause and reflect on the lifestyle they would prefer for their family and themselves. Guernsey provides the security and safety of a stable and beautiful environment with a simple and straightforward approach to becoming a resident. The island is an ideal home for families and has a thriving business community boasting global expertise. Guernsey is a self-governing jurisdiction that sets its own taxes: personal income tax is a flat 20%, most businesses pay no corporation/business income tax; plus capital gains, inheritance, gifts, and value added taxes are all absent.
What message do you wish to send to businesses and entrepreneurs?
Despite the pandemic, life in Guernsey goes on much as normal now, whilst government plans a “revive and thrive” strategy. The stable government and close community have certainly worked together positively to effectively eliminate Covid-19. It is ideal as a place to relocate to, either with a business, family or both. In addition to sunshine, relaxation, a great work/life balance and low taxes it offers genuine stability, security and safety – all providing simply a better life for you!