The Unit for International Financial Center Services (Stabsstelle für internationale Finanzplatzagenden – SIFA) is to be renamed as the Unit for Financial Center Innovation (Stabsstelle für Finanzplatzinnovation – SFI). The move was announced by the Liechtenstein government in a press release. The aim is to enshrine the issue of finance industry innovation, defined as a key focus back in 2013, at an organizational level now too. Relevant tasks that had previously been the domain of Ministry for General Government Affairs and Finance will now be transferred to the SFI. Thomas Dünser has been named as interim head of the SFI.
The creation of the SFI represents “a further important step towards improving the visibility of Liechtenstein for both foreign and domestic companies”, according to the government’s announcement. Prime Minister Adrian Hasler commented: “The appeal of Liechtenstein as a financial center will in future hinge upon governmental framework conditions, short pathways and competencies of the authorities to a much greater extent.”
By placing the issue of finance industry innovation firmly in spotlight, Liechtenstein’s intention is to provide state support to encourage and develop the innovative ability of the country’s financial sector. To this end, the framework conditions have been optimized, among other measures.
SIFA, which has now been renamed, was previously responsible for ensuring financial sector compliance with international standards. The government has stated that the defined targets were fulfilled in this regard. However, moving forward, the issue will also remain of core importance for an “internationally orientated finance industry such as Liechtenstein”.