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Small Nations Conference to get underway

How small countries can best play a part on the international stage is the theme of a nine-day programme at the Business School, starting on Sunday.

Degates from 29 small states are gathering for the Small Countries Financial Management Programme, launched here last year to great acclaim.

The course is designed to help small countries develop their economies, interact with much bigger players on the world stage AND meet stringent international regulations.

The Isle of Man's success in developing its financial sector will be used as a valuable example to other nations.

Decision makers from all corners of the globe are represented - including Jamaica, Belize, the Maldives, Papua New Guinea, the Seychelles, Botaswa and Swaziland.

The Himilayan kingdom of Bhutan and the Pacifit atoll of Kiribati are among the smallest countires taking part.

The initiave is a partnership between the Isle of Man Goverment, the World Bank and a number of other bodies, including Oxford University, where delegates will spend an additional four days.

Among the areas covered - negotiating skills, debt management and risk assessment - with the sharing of experience among diverse countries one of the programme's great strengths.

Feedback from last year's inaugural event was positive - some delegates described it as very instructive and wholly inspiring.

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