March 08, 2021
Insurers have paid $1.8 billion in claims from reported losses following Hurricane Dorian, according to the Insurance Commission of The Bahamas’ (ICB) Annual Plan for 2021. By September 2020, the number of claims had grown to 14,157 with losses at $2.1 billion.
“The year 2020 has been fraught with challenges, some of which lingered from the devastating impact of Hurricane Dorian in 2019. From December 2019, the commission required general insurers to report losses, claims and reinsurance payments across each island on a quarterly basis. At the end of December 2019, reported losses for Hurricane Dorian stood at $1.6 billion, increasing to $1.8 million in June 2020 and $2.1 billion in September 2020,” the annual plan states.
“Insurers and adjusters continued to settle claims during 2020, primarily connected to the islands of Abaco and Grand Bahama. As of September 30, 2020, the following industry aggregates associated with Hurricane Dorian were reported as the number of claims reported – 14,157; total claims paid – $1.80 billion; claims settled by reinsurance – $1.77 billion.”
Looking ahead for 2021, the ICB states in the report that one of its major threats continues to be international blacklisting and sanctions.
“The commission’s obligation to comply with international standards and reporting did not abate during the year. The United Nations Security Council (UNSC) issued updates concerning associated individuals and entities placed on their sanctions list. From these updates, financial institutions, namely life insurers, are responsible for reviewing their database to determine whether they have any exposure to individuals and entities on the UNSC sanctions list. Positive discoveries were to be submitted immediately to the Office of the Attorney General and the Financial Intelligence Unit while no reports were submitted to the commission,” the ICB report states.
“This reporting requirement forms part of the enhanced reporting the commission must maintain to comply with international reporting standards. During the year, the Supervision Unit conducted other key AML/CFT/PF (anti-money laundering/countering the financing of terrorism and proliferation financing) reporting exercises, which included the completion of the AML risk assessments completed by licensees in the latter months of 2019. The risk assessments included a broad overview of the life and general insurance sectors’ exposure to money laundering and terrorist financing risk and provided specific observations and recommendations for each licensee to implement. Follow-up in this area will continue to form part of the supervisory oversight in 2021 with respect to AML/CFT/PF supervision.”
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