While the rest of the world winds down for Christmas, the renewals have created havoc for insurers and everyone is busy running around – especially brokers and cedants – looking for the best rate with the maximum covers.
The long-awaited rate hardening isn’t taking place across the board despite the tougher business environment and increased natural disasters. Yet the industry has the inherent resources and wherewithal to shoulder the greater risks being forced upon it although the premium pie has shrunk.
The 15th SIRC, where most of the reinsurers gathered to get reloaded and recharged, worked like a dream for most delegates. On average the hardworking delegate clocked up some six miles of walking over four days and met a minimum of 32 different business partners. Singapore, as the Monte-Carlo of the east, was on full display as a successful reinsurance hub where real VIPs came and real business was transacted.
At the SIRC it was very evident that, in reinsurance, the spirit is indomitable – to go the whole hog to help cedants find their cover. The 15th SIRC made milestones in many ways including record numbers and showed that the reinsurers’ spirit was ready to take on the greater risks facing society and business. There was talk of a cyber risk pool and bringing more real Nat CAT covers to the people in need and setting up a global research hub.
Then there was also the 22nd Asia Insurance Industry Awards that saluted excellence, paying tribute to those embracing cutting-edge strategies and technologies. Also, for the first time, the Young Leader and Woman Leader of the Year categories were introduced to show how the industry is becoming more diverse and inclusive. It was a night of great admiration where the industry relished the best in class - with even global CEOs in tow.
In this issue we also bring you the verdict of a roundtable we held on the sidelines of the SIRC to see how the industry can sell itself better and extend insurance penetration – especially among those exposed – without losing its shirt.
But our greatest pride this month is the interview with an ‘old’ friend, Mr Clement Cheung, who has now returned as CEO of the IA of Hong Kong. He shares his vision for the market, challenges notwithstanding.
Our country profile this month is on the South Asian markets as a build-up to the 12th India Rendezvous next month in Mumbai. South Asia is booming despite the occasional political hiccough and financial woes. And India, as one of the key markets in Asia, is getting its fair share of attention as Asia is seen as the next compulsive ‘must be present’ in a global spree.
As we take stock in December, investments figure strongly. We share some tips from insiders as we look at navigating through new waters and being green in trying to remain entrenched in the future of global wealth.
It is December, hence we take that leap to bring you the joy of insuring happiness while embracing diversity and being more inclusive. It is all about the feel good factor of what insurance can do.
With all the promises of Christmas and a brand New Year in the waiting, December just always gives rise to hope everywhere. This is the great blessing of life. Be a part of the season to be jolly – no matter how trying is the hour.
Merry Christmas to all. Ho! Ho! Ho!
Asia Insurance Review