23 Dec 2010

Cook Islands considering offshore jurisdiction promotion

4:32 pm on 23 December 2010

Promotion of the Cook Islands in the offshore finance industry is one of the initiatives the government's considering to boost the economy.

The global ratings agency Standard and Poor's this week downgraded the country's long term credit rating from BB to BB minus.

The finance minister says although the rating's not too favourable he's not too concerned about it having a huge impact on the country's international standing.

Mark Brown says the government's committed to strengthening the tourism industry, the only viable industry for short to medium term gain.

But he says the Cook Islands offshore financial jurisdiction is another area that can be developed.

"The offshore finance industry provides eight percent of our GDP and we're looking to grow that over the next few years, as we, as the government takes on a commitment I guess if you like to diversify the economy away from tourism."

The Cook Islands finance minister, Mark Brown.