It’s mid-year. A good time to ruminate on the headlines that have sent your business plans awry, upset your board or challenged your fundamentals. There is still time to adjust the plans to get over the minor hiccups and get back on track to meet this year’s forecast. But what about next year’s strategy? Survival and long-term sustainability?
AIR’s 25th Anniversary Summit was a resounding thumbs up for the future and sustainability of the industry as the need for insurance is ever increasing and governments and international bodies are waking up to the dynamic role that insurance can play in protecting human rights and providing relief in times of disaster. Do insurers know that? Are they rising to the challenge? Or are they still moaning about being painfully misunderstood? Read our coverage of the Summit which shows that the industry is not lacking in valiant heroes who will stand up for the industry. AIR certainly is gratified with the full list of duties assigned to it by those with great faith in the industry. We shall persevere to fly the flag to salute the “Value of Insurance to Society” and set up a brigade to fine the “bad-mouthers”.
Still on saluting, we have been deluged with entries for the 19th Asia Insurance Industry Awards showing that the stars are still shining in the spirit of wanting to excel. This is the best driving force for change as Asia moves to gingerly take on the centre stage in insurance. By size, it will account for 36% of global premium market in just 10 years. But in spirit, will it be faster or slower? Can Asia lead the global industry? Are you ready to stand up to be counted or waiting coyly to be called?
In Nat CATs, Asia is already seen as one of the regions most prone to floods and earthquakes and has been mercilessly hit with greater disasters. In April alone, the top three natural disasters in Asia were estimated to cost US$6 billion. The Nepal earthquakes --affecting more than 12 million people, have uninsured losses estimated to cost US$5 billion over a five-year time frame -- is a grim reminder of the unpredictable wrath of Mother Nature. Insurance protection is but a small but necessary reprieve in the big picture. Governments in APEC are already talking of pooling mechanisms to help the masses cope with life in such disasters, and insurance is a key element of that plan.
June is the time for IIS with its re-branded “Global Insurance Forum”. There will be great new ideas on “filling the protection gap” with high-powered speakers lined up for the event in New York. Sometimes, it is as easy as just adopting a “blue ocean strategy” to look at the underserved or unserved markets instead of fighting on the same turf with the herds merely on price with discounts and extras thrown in. Our special on “Making Pricing a Boardroom agenda” is a must read.
Coinciding with the CFO Summit in Hong Kong, our Cover Story is on CFOs. We give them so many titles such as partner and adviser, but just do not seem to be able to get their job description neatly codified.
And back-to-back with the CFO Summit is our 2nd RBC Conference where we try to help the industry get ready for the regulatory changes taking place. This time we get a clearer look at C-Ross which is widely seen as leading the pack in regulations with clarity and practicality. Read our piece on evolving regulatory changes in Asia.
Our Country Profile is on Thailand which continues to surpass all expectations, despite the political uncertainties, with the regulator giving a report card on industry performance, saying: “It is as good as it gets”. Bravo!
With our new-found drive to more aggressively reach out to Corporate Commercial Risk Managers, we bring you for the first time an amazing insight into the much-feted RIMS annual conference beyond all that jazz in New Orleans.
With June, there is so much one can do. Just stretch your mind and look at everything through the eyes of the midnight sun as they say in Rovaniemi.
Asia Insurance Review