Interviews

Andrey T. UNTON, General Director, BELARUS Re

Last year there were a positive dynamics of development of BELARUS Re. Thus, in 2015 the total volume of reinsurance premiums reached BYR 488.0 billion, up by 44.6% in the current prices compared to 2014. There has been a significant growth and financial performance. Thus, the net profit of BELARUS Re has grown by 43.2% over the year 2015 and insurance reserves were increased by one-third.

Michail SHELIUBSKY
Vice President of the Aviation Insurance Department
Russian Association of Aviation and Space Insurers

The main challenges of aviation insurers are linked with the state of aviation industry in Russia, which are founded into a structural crisis, characterized by a decline in traffic, large losses, changes in structure of traffic and the structure of cost. During 2015 the crisis grew and the passenger traffic declined. Moreover, the loss of profitable international destinations led to an increasing share of unprofitable domestic traffic. According to the Federal Air Transport Agency, the total financial losses of the airlines increased by 70% in 2015.

Samir OMERHODZIC
Director
Insurance Agency of Bosnia and Herzegovina

Increased supervision and activities of the entity agencies for insurance supervision on the adequate application of the premium system in Bosnia and Herzegovina has led to an increase in total premium of compulsory motor third-party liability insurance of 8.29% and an increase in the share of this type of insurance in total premium in non-life insurance of 3.41%.

Enkeleda SHEHI
Executive General Director
Albanian FSA

The Albanian FSA in cooperation with the World Bank has been working on the draft bill on catastrophe insurance. The purpose of this bill is to regulate the compulsory catastrophe insurance. Compulsory catastrophe insurance will cover the damage, caused by either earthquakes or floods and it will not extend to all types of buildings.

Pavel SHUTOV
President
Russian Association of Aviation and Space Insurers

For the time being, the Russian market capacity for spacecraft insurance is about USD 20-25 million. The main capacity for such risks is offered by the first 5 largest insurance companies on the Russian market, including SOGAZ, INGOSSTRAKH and VTB Insurance. It is important to note that the market's total capacity strongly depends on their un/willingness to re/insurance space risks.

Mauro CANTONI
Vice President Insurance
OCTO Telematics S.p.a.

I would say, particularly for the CEE region, where there is a harsh competition and pressure on prices, that introducing telematics may introduce a variable which allows insurers to no longer compete only in terms of price. At the moment, every proposition is more or less the same, but introducing a variable you shift the competition from a price one to value one, introducing a unique selling proposition, also helping the market to make a step forward.

Paul CARTY
Chairman
BIPAR's EU Standing Committee

My experience over the years has led me to come to the firm conviction that most if not all of the significant consumer type issues that have arisen in various markets over the last decade were not as a result of inadequate regulation but the ineffective implementation of existing legislation. So my advice is use the powers that exist as they are in my opinion fit for purpose and stop adding to the sum of existing regulations which as they expand are becoming more and more remote and an ever increasing cost which is being borne by consumers and by the economy at large.

Joe LOUWAGIE
Assistant Vice President
Property Claim Services

While the exposure to natural or man-made catastrophes in CEE is varied, all countries can benefit from receiving industry-leading cat planning and response data and best practices from PCS benchmarking reports. In addition, PCS would foster education and information sharing by bringing speakers from the global market to the CEE through close work with XPRIMM. PCS is also part of a broader company called VERISK Analytics, and there are numerous VERISK solutions that could have great benefit to CEE insurance markets.

Dante CAFARELLI
Partner and Executive, Head of Insurance Sector Italy
Internet of Things Insurance Leader Europe
IMB Italy

Young customers, the GenX and Millennials generations are feeling pretty comfortable with insurers using the data from IoT devices and also agree to a large extent that if their insurer would use such data, most probably their loyalty to their insurance provider would improve. In fact, it is for these generations that insurers need to adapt their systems and become able to interact on all channels with their current and potential customers. Price alone will no longer be the main feature considered when choosing an insurance product and provider.


Nikolai GALUSHIN
First Deputy Chairman of the Management Board
SOGAZ OJSC

In reinsurance, the problem will be the decreasing of the investors' interest for this segment due to high competition and the reduction of margins in this business, or due to the changes of stock value of insurers that also lead to an outflow of capital from the insurance segment. But, as I see this will not be associated with any natural disaster, instead will be a stock factor, or a decrease of investor interest for this segment.

Andrey T. UNTON
General Director
BELARUS Re (Republican Unitary Enterprise "Belarusian National Reinsurance Organization")

BELARUS Re cooperates with companies in South-Eastern Asia, participating in a number of property facultative reinsurance programs. In addition, facultative business from such countries as UAE, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Azerbaijan and Turkey is recently started to increase. Next year, as in previous ones, BELARUS Re will focus on the international market. Further we plan to expand geographically in order to find new promising projects.

Walter LEONHARTSBERGER-SCHROTT
CEO
WIENER Osiguarnje VIG
Croatia

The changes to the European insurance supervisory system referred to as Solvency II present great challenges for the whole insurance industry in Croatia, especially the risk assessment and future treatment of local Government Bonds denominated in foreign currencies.

Zoran NARASANOV
CEO
Winner - VIG
Macedonia

Winner is a company that grew, developed and was built under conditions of crisis. Our success is not an accident, it was planned and carried out. From that aspect, we have learned to develop our expectations around the readiness of our team to respond to any circumstances and adjust to any changes, and alleviate unexpected external conditions. Naturally, we are closely monitoring all developments on the market, but also in economic trends in general, and our consistent growth is the indicator of our competence to anticipate the conditions and adjust accordingly.

Crisis realities impact Engineering insurance in Russia

Describing the general situation in the Russian construction industry, it is also important to notice absence of any new system players - companies with or without international capital, which appears anyway a very obvious and expected outcome.

Melda SUAYIPOGLU
Corporate Business Officer
ALLIANZ Turkey

While Turkey's per capita income is above the world average, per capita insurance spending is merely a quarter of the world average and one-tenth of the European average. Insurance has yet to reach the desired level in Turkey. This is a developing sector. Low insurance levels and high insurable potential continues to draw the attention of international investors to the Turkish insurance market. While only 15 firms operating in Turkey out of a total of 58 had international capital in 2001, the number of firms with international capital has increased significantly since 2008, reaching 44 at the end 2014.

Tom JOHANSMEYER
VERISK

What do London, Paris, and New York have in common? Increasingly, the answer is Turkey. As reinsurance hubs around the world face soft market conditions brought on by abundant capital and quiet catastrophe years, underwriters are hungry for opportunities to drive profitable growth. And while a wide range of mature market strategies may offer incremental returns, they can't provide the near-term gains that the market craves. The real solution is to bring more "original risk" to market — new risks transferred into the global insurance and reinsurance community. And that's where Turkey serves as a model for the future of the market.

Igor YURGENS
President
All-Russian Insurance Association (ARIA)
President, Russian Association of Motor Insurers (RAMI)

Introduction of the unique methodology for calculating damage has contributed to reducing the number of litigations settled in a court between insurers and the MTPL clients. At the same time, the number of litigations settled in a court has fallen twice: the insured does not want to be judged or to pay court fees, therefore most of the litigations are settled out of court. Briefly, the parties have learnt to come to a mutual agreement. The only problem area which remains are the complaints regarding the method of calculation for "bonus-malus" (not everything depends on the insurers, car owners sometimes make mistakes in providing data).

Vaagn AGHAVELYAN, Deputy CEO, ROSGOSSTRAKH Armenia

The Government program for the implementation of an agricultural insurance institution in the country is still under development stage, and Armenian insurance companies are involved in this process but it is early to talk about any product. In order to involve insurance companies in agro-insurance there is a need to create a certain infrastructure and to appoint a regulator like the Motor Insurers' Bureau.

Johannes Martin HARTMANN
Chairman of the Board
VIG Re

For VIG clients we are "per definition" their preferred reinsurer, but we apply the same underwriting standards for Group and Non Group business and for both segments we have to compete with other reinsurers to win their business.
What are the main challenges for a CEE reinsurer, what are the main challenges and opportunities for a specialist reinsurer and how can a company can become a significant player in just 7 years? We invite you to find out the answers in the following interview.