Business Groups Praise Solvency II Decision

November 27, 2015

Insurance and business associations from the European Union, the United Kingdom and Bermuda have praised the European Commission’s action to find Bermuda and the Bermuda Monetary Authority [BMA] as fully equivalent for all regulatory purposes under the European Union’s Solvency II regulatory and supervisory system for insurers which takes effect on Jan. 1, 2016.

Bermuda and Switzerland are the only two jurisdictions to date that have been recognized as fully equivalent under the EU initiative. The Bermuda equivalency delegated act now stands for a 90 day consultation period with the European Council and the European Parliament.

BDA CEO Ross Webber, CEO of Bermuda Business Development Agency

The European Commission’s approval of Bermuda for full equivalence is very positive news for the whole jurisdiction.What it says about our Island’s regulatory environment and the careful way we supervise our international financial centre is reassuring. It confirms how the larger world, particularly Europe, views Bermuda as a world player in this sphere.

Significant kudos are due to the BMA, the Bermuda government, ABIR and the Island’s commercial insurance and reinsurance market for their many years of dedicated work to bring about this result. It represents an appropriate endorsement that should reap benefits not only for Bermuda’s risk industry, but for every sector of our global market whose success depends on Bermuda’s blue-chip reputation.

Jo Willaert, President, Federation of European Risk Management Associations [FERMA], Brussels:

It is of great importance that European industrial and financial business entities have continued access to important commercial insurance and reinsurance capacity from Bermuda commercial insurers and reinsurers. FERMA, therefore, welcomes the decision of the European Commission to grant a full equivalence decision of the Bermudian supervisory system in relation to articles 172, 227 and 260 of the Solvency II Directive.

Since 2010 and its response to the first CEIOPS consultation on Equivalency Assessment for certain third countries [CEIOPS - CP 81], FERMA has been determined to ensure that the coverage of risks for large European corporations remains available and affordable in order to protect the competitiveness of European industries.

It also protects their resilience in the event of catastrophic losses as large claims payments are made into the EU economy. The protection of European businesses will be strengthened by the equivalence decision from the European Commission.”

David Matcham, CEO, International Underwriting Association [IUA], London:

The Bermudian reinsurance market is an important source of diversification in reinsurance capacity for the international insurance market and for European insurers.

Bermudian equivalence will ensure market access and be helpful for EU consumers. We’d encourage the Commission and Council to expedite their comments, if any, on the delegated act so equivalence can move ahead.

Hugh Savill, Director of Regulation, Association of British Insurers [ABI], London:

Given the close and mutually beneficial relationship between the London market and Bermuda, the publication by the European Commission of its proposals on Solvency II equivalence for Bermuda is really good news. 2016 is nearly upon us so we hope to see these proposals promptly adopted.

Bradley Kading, President of the Association of Bermuda Insurers and Reinsurers [ABIR], Bermuda

Solvency 2 equivalence for Bermuda will ensure competitive markets and better prices for European businesses and consumers. ABIR members provide significant amounts of reinsurance capacity to European based insurers.

Bermuda companies provided 20% of the recent UK Pool Re terrorism reinsurance placement and historically have supplied 20% of the European property catastrophe reinsurance market. In addition Bermuda insurers have covered between 20% and 50% of recent European based airline and ocean marine catastrophic losses.”

Robert Paton, President, Bermuda Insurance Management Association [BIMA]

The announcement of the delegated Acts in relation to Solvency II equivalence is a further example of the leading role taken by the Bermuda Monetary Authority in ensuring that the Bermuda Insurance and Reinsurance market remains at the forefront of global supervision.

The Bermuda Insurance Management Association applauds the BMA’s vision, leadership and tenacity in achieving a bi-furcated risk based, pragmatic regulatory regime appropriate for both the Bermuda Commercial and Limited Purpose Insurer markets.

Wendy Outerbridge, Corporate Secretary, Bermuda International Long Term Insurers and Reinsurers Association [BILTIR]

The Bermuda International Long Term Insurers and Reinsurers Association [BILTIR] congratulates the Bermuda Monetary Authority [BMA] on obtaining equivalence with the European Union’s Solvency II prudential regulation regime.

Equivalency is a significant achievement for Bermuda which will allow its insurance industry to compete more effectively in the global marketplace. The BMA has demonstrated its dedication and commitment to the industry in achieving this goal.

BILTIR has been pleased to work with the BMA on this initiative over the past several years, and we are excited about the future opportunities this will bring to Bermuda.

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