Cayman Islands: Country and Foreign Investment
This page was last updated on 28 June 2019.
When Jamaica became independent from the UK in 1962, the Cayman Islands opted to remain a Crown Colony. Under the constitution established in 1972, Cayman is a British overseas territory, with a governor appointed by the Queen for a term of 4 years.
The executive otherwise consists of a council, made up of three official members appointed by the governor and five elected members selected from the 19 elected representatives of the Legislative Assembly. The latter, the sole chamber in the legislature, also contains two ex officio members, who are appointed by the governor.
Elections are held every four years. The most recent election was in May 2017, in which the People's Progressive Movement (PPM) won 7 out of the 19 seats and the Cayman Democratic Party (CDP) won 3. As the other 9 seats were won by independents, this meant that the PPM held on to power, and their leader Alden McLaughlin was elected premier.
An amendment to the constitution in 1994 paved the way for a new ministerial form of government. The five elected members of the council are now referred to as ministers with portfolio responsibilities assigned by the governor. A district commissioner represents the governor in the two sister islands. Government offices are in George Town.
Attending a CARICOM meeting in July, 2005, Kurt Tibbetts, then leader of government business of the Cayman Islands, said that his country will keep its current relationship with the community. Cayman has associate membership of CARICOM. It did not sign the Treaty of Chaguaramas in 1973 and does not participate in voting although its representatives attend CARICOM meetings with observer status.