Interviews

Kaan ACUN
Group Manager
MILLI Re

Given the fact that MILLI Re has been able to penetrate into most of the target territories over the 9 year period, the main aim for the medium term is to achieve further diversity in business written from these markets by adding accounts which would be selected on the basis of their potential profitability and related exposure and further reduce the retro element in this book in order to avoid clash of exposures. MENA region continues to be of vital importance to MILLI Re, followed by Asia. We also see a strong potential to grow further with the CIS and CEE countries as well as the African and Latin American regions.

Vasily KOZLOV
(CRIS, MLIS)
Chief Operating Officer
SELECTA Insurance Company
Russia

I cannot say that something significantly occurred after this year's sanction extension - the effect from the "first wave" of sanctions was rather moderate and the biggest problem local players face is finding reinsurance capacity for their clients, who were unfortunate enough to be added to the sanction list. While most of such projects are rather small and capacity can be found locally the market does sometimes see risks valued above USD 1.0 billion, which makes them significantly harder to place.

Dmitry GARMASH
Head of Moscow Representative Office
BARENTS Re (Panama)

Russian insurance community didn't succeed finding a proper, sufficient support from so called alternative markets (predominantly, from China, Asia, MENA) to cover the major portion of sanctioned exposure where the traditional Western markets can't be of support anymore. Thus, the ground for creating a state owned reinsurer looks reasonable to guarantee the high-valued state interests domestically and overseas with a stake on large scale projects (property, construction and cargo for international trade).

Andrey T. UNTON
General Director
BELARUS RE

In order to reduce usage of foreign currency in settlement and to increase the public confidence in the national currency the National Bank of the Republic of Belarus has been taking measures to de-dollarization of the economy. Such measures also affected the insurance sector. Thus, from March 1st, 2015 insurance companies were interdicted to accept premiums from individuals in foreign currency. An exception was made for the two insurance companies engaged in life insurance, including supplementary pension insurance.

Ioseb GOGOLASHVILI
Head of the Insurance State Supervision Service of Georgia

There aren't any type of compulsory insurance laws operating in the Georgia, which is one of the determining factor that in 2014 insurance GPW was of only 1.2% of the GDP. Still, the recent catastrophes have proved that the insurance companies have properly settled all their losses with the help of appropriate reinsurance mechanisms.

Jean ZENNERS
President
Council of Bureaux

The first major challenge for the system is financial stability, which is the main topic we have to care about. We cannot assure the good and smooth handling of international claims if the financial stability of the Green Card System is not assured.

Jean ZENNERS
President of the Council of Bureaux

All Moldavian insurance companies will not be allowed to sell green card policies anymore, which means that they will lose an important part of their business. Another one, the Moldavian drivers will have no possibility to freely go outside of the country without purchasing frontier insurance. And frontier insurance is much more expensive than buying a green card here. Also, the Moldavian Bureau will still have to pay claims for policies sold before.

Vakhtang DEKANOSIDZE
CEO
IRAO (VIG) Ltd, Georgia

The most promising business line in Georgia, based on market capacity and potential, is the motor line. The point is that, among officially registered 900 000 vehicles, approximately 7% are insured with motor hull risks and about 6% are MTPL insurance holders. With the implementation of MTPL Law, which is planned for next year within the EU Association Agreement, the motor insurance has to become the line that fuels whole insurance industry.

Assen CHRISTOV
Chairman of the Supervisory Board
EUROHOLD

The economic environment and the insurance market are fully correlated. Healthy growth of the insurance business is hardly possible without economic growth. Of course, we have been an example of an expanding business in the times of economic downturn, but this expansion also comes along immense managerial and organizational efforts.

John SCHOONBEE
Chief Medical Officer
SWISS Re

The European Insurance Report 2015, released by SWISS Re in June 2015, is based on a survey of 13,000 people across 13 countries in Europe and the Middle East. The Report looks into attitudes towards what life and health insurance products people have in place, where the gaps are in their protection and focuses on possible solutions to help with the financial consequences of unexpected health shocks, especially for sudden disability or serious illness. According to the Report's findings, collectively, the total level of underinsurance in the countries surveyed is currently around EUR 750 billion. Assuming that people would need a 60% replacement income if unable to work because of illness or injury, the report finds that at current levels replacement income would barely cover 40% for most people.


GDV - German Insurance Association

There is virtual no building in Germany, which doesn't have fire insurance. Additionally more than 90% of all buildings have an insurance cover against losses from hail and storm. 40% of all buildings do have an extended cover against natural hazards, including flood, heavy rainfall, snow pressure, subsidence, landslides, etc. In the past, the introduction of compulsory insurance against natural hazards was discussed over and over again. However, because in Germany we do have a working and efficient market for natural hazard insurance, there is no need for a compulsory solution.

Fuad KULIYEV, Chairman of the Management Board, AzRe

Ratings assignment had a positive impact on AzRe's reputation on the local market, as it is one of the highest ratings in the economy of the country. Moreover, the rating allows us to underwrite more risks from foreign markets. We have started writing more business from post soviet countries, as well as some countries from the South East Asia, Middle East, and Central/South America.

The PAID objectives for this year, the causes for which the penetration degree of the compulsory real estate insurance is lower than 18%, the damages paid and the information campaign on the insurance importance and benefits targetted at the population are among the topics discussed by Nicoleta RADU-NEACSU, General Manager of PAID Romania, during the interview with PRIMM Asigurari & Pensii magazine.

Romel TABAJA, Deputy CEO, TRUST Re

What we have accomplished over the last 5 -7 years is to become a medium sized reinsurer. We began developing as a regional reinsurer, a fact that is no longer a reality. We are proud of who we are and we always start by looking at we've achieved in the past. Meanwhile, we need to always focus on our partners as their satisfaction is a target always on our mind.

Krzysztof JABLONSKI, Managing Director, Van Ameyde CEE

Claims managers Van Ameyde CEE have been active in the Central Eastern European and CIS countries for some ten years now. The company has developed from motor, bodily injury and property claims handling to providing complete claims outsourcing services as well as IT solutions aimed at making claims processes more efficient. Van Ameyde is the only claims management organisation with its own full-service IT company, called (Zero)70 with offices in Rijswijk (the Netherlands) and Lisbon (Portugal). We speak with Krzysztof (Kris) JABLONSKI, Managing Director of Van Ameyde CEE to find out more.

Bozana SLJIVAR, Director, Insurance Agency of Republic of Srpska, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Raising awareness about the importance of insurance, with an emphasis on non-mandatory and life insurance, is a necessity. Efforts should be invested in attempts to reduce the share of MTPL in non-life business. The reasons for lagging behind should be sought both in the general economic circumstances, such as economic stability, the achieved level of the standard of living, and in specific circumstances such as those related to tax exemptions and other incentives, the insurance culture and the low level of financial literacy in the population.

Hrvoje PAUKOVIC, Director, Croatian Insurance Bureau

The Croatian insurance industry is facing several challenges. The long-lasting financial crisis and the overall reduction of household income and consumer consumption in Croatia have weighed heavily on the total market premium for years. After 12 quarters of GDP decline, the first-quarter 2015 GDP showed a modest growth. If this encouraging trend continues, it will certainly stimulate a gradual recovery of the insurance market.

Michaela KOLLER, General Manager, Insurance Europe

There are significant concerns that the new Solvency II regulation treats insurers as if they invest like traders, and are faced with the same risks as traders. We shouldn't forget that insurers are Europe's largest institutional investors. In 2013 they had over €8.5 trillion of assets under management. That is roughly equivalent to 60% of the entire Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of Europe.

Johannes HARTMANN, CEO, VIG Re

Reinsurance buying is undergoing nowadays a fundamental change. Insurance companies are becoming more sophisticated as they understand their needs in risks and capital management much better. They make their decisions how to optimize their reinsurance in a much better informed way. Reinsurance is not anymore a foreign word to the chief financial officer or the risk manager but they do not know how to utilize reinsurance as a strategic tool to optimize their business. And as a provider you have to understand the impact of a specific solution on the relevant specific accounting standards and capital model.