As Asia continues to become a burgeoning global economic force, led by China, thousands of expats are being attracted to the region. The industrial revolution of China and Far East Asia has now clicked into a higher gear, and job opportunities for skilled westerners are plentiful.
Now it’s no secret that if you want to attract the best, you have to put together the most attractive package – which includes a great salary. So what you have currently in the Middle East, and Asia in particular, is a trend of expatriates with inflated incomes but little guidance on how to best utilise the financial opportunities this brings.
One of the standout, and largest, financial advisories operating in Asia and the Middle East is International Financial Services (IFS). Established in 1997 by an experienced expat husband and wife combination, IFS has emerged to become a business which has, despite its success, always stayed true to the original vision. Paul and Louise Fewtrell very quickly realised that if they could establish a financial advisory based on a foundation made up of three core pillars, they could find success within an industry which can be very unforgiving to new entrants.
The three core commitments of IFS can be best summed up by three simple words:
These three words aren’t always easy to associate with some financial establishments, but the reputation that IFS has carved for itself in Asia has helped it to reach out to new territories. Indeed IFS now proudly boast three offices employing more than 100 people, based in Qatar, Singapore and Hong Kong.
What is most striking about the chosen destinations is the level of regulation in all three, and the number of licences and required compliance to be able to operate there. Take Qatar for example, the regulatory body (QFCRA) is particularly stringent when it comes to allowing overseas operators to do business within its Financial Centre. IFS is one of only two foreign advisories to be licensed to operate there.
The same is also true of both Singapore and Hong Kong, whose individual regulating bodies regard ethical practices and integrity very highly.
The growth of IFS has been down to reputation. They are an established entity and a trusted, licensed broker in each of the territories in which they operate, and with communication channels between expats so easily accessible, they find that many of their new clients approach then based upon personal recommendations.
Why Would You Need Advice?
Moving to a new country can be fraught with stress and difficulty, it can often be so much that people forget their initial intentions or financial goals. Many expatriates have young families that need protecting, and are also moving to a country with which they have no real familiarity. IFS specialises in every aspect of managing expatriate wealth. This is something which most of us are unable to find the time to organise, and even if we could, we probably wouldn’t know where to start.
From education planning, retirement options, and tax efficiency, to insurance products and monthly budgeting, there’s an aspect of financial planning that we could all use a little help with.
Find a company which you can trust, which have a credible reputation, and who offer transparency and an ethical approach, and you’re halfway towards making expatriate life work for you and your future.