Change is coming, collaboration is needed: SIRC 2019

November 1 2019 by InsuranceAsia News Staff

Herbert Fromme, insurance correspondent at Suddeutsche Zeitung, kicked off Thursday’s SIRC panel with a tough question – will the importance of insurance decline, grow or stay the same in the future?

The panellists agreed that the industry will stay relevant in addressing global market needs – through change, transformation and coming up with solutions by working together with the whole industry ecosystem.

Group chief economist of Swiss Re, Jerome Jean Haegeli said that all market stakeholders and policymakers have a shared interest. Allianz’s chief executive of property and casualty in Asia Pacific, Claudia Salem, echoed these sentiments.

Salem spoke specifically about acknowledging the unknowable and risky space of cyber risk – and that for solutions and protection, partnerships with regulators and all players is necessary. She said that insurers will retain their relevance by being the key players that understand risk assessment fundamentals.

Looking at the future division of labour, the audience poll showed a majority believing primary insurers and reinsurers will work together more in the future. James Nash, chief executive – international at Guy Carpenter, said insurers and reinsurers will come together for future collaboration, bringing different market access and new products. For Talal Al Zain, Trust Re’s group chief executive, both will continue to support each other.

The role of brokers, according to the panellists and audience poll, will not be eliminated. Transactions may be on the decline, said Nash, but brokers’ value and insights will increase. Al Zain and Devesh Srivastava, general manager of GIC Re highlighted the continued importance of broker, as a helpful intermediary.

All panellists noted the increasing disruptions and need for change and innovation. Nash also spoke about the adaptation needed.

Three decades ago, the market was focused on the protection of tangible assets, whereas today the reverse is true – not all risks now are visible risks. Huge opportunities lie ahead for not only protection coverage, but prevention services, said Nash. Salem also noted that the market will go from selling products to services and solutions.