UAE. Inga Beale, CEO, Lloyd’s, met with H.E Essa Kazim, Governor of the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) and Chairman of Dubai Financial Market (DFM) earlier this week.
The executives discussed 2017 business outlook, new growth opportunities and means to further promote an efficient and effective flow of information to mitigate and build deeper risk insights across the region.
Beale is in the UAE to attend the Dubai World Insurance Congress taking place from 28 February – 1 March, as its keynote speaker.
Addressing decision makers at the Congress, Beale stressed on the role of insurance in driving innovation in the global economy. “The insurance industry plays a critical role in underpinning economic development and growth. We underwrite human progress: without us driverless cars would be stuck in their charging pods, space rockets would be stationary on the launch pad and new infrastructure would grind to a halt on its rusty tracks,” said Inga Beale, CEO, Lloyd’s.
However, she warned of the need for the insurance sector to be aware of the rapid digital transformation taking place globally. This fast-paced shift is driving changes to the risk landscape as intangible, digital assets become increasingly vulnerable to new threats like cyber-attacks, which according to Beale, will remain one of the most critical and rapidly evolving risks that businesses face in 2017.
Lloyd’s underwriters pioneered cyber insurance and have seen a significant increase in demand in recent years. This year 77 syndicates plan to write $1.2bn premium income, a 40% increase from 2016. Lloyd’s currently has around 25% of the global cyber insurance market and is leading the way in ensuring clarity in underwriting and managing these exposures.
In the Middle East, risk management and mitigation to build resilience for the future has become more critical than ever before. According to Lloyd’s City Risk Index 2015 - 2025, the Middle East will generate $2.4trillion in GDP in the coming decade, but 15% of this economic growth is at risk from 18 threats. Man-made threats such as market crash, sovereign default, terrorism, power outage and cyber-attacks account for $213bn or approximately 58% of GDP at risk.
“The Middle East is a key area of interest for us, and our work to grow our business here is integral to our global market access strategy. Lloyd’s has an expert understanding of the risks across the Middle East and can help protect business across the region. The presence of the Lloyd’s underwriting community in the DIFC allows us to build stronger relationships and deeper risk insights across the region and we are seeing promising business growth as a result of this investment,” Beale commented.
Lloyd’s, who will soon complete two successful years of operations in the DIFC, established its specialist underwriting platform in Dubai in 2015 to access business from the Middle East and North Africa region.
There are currently 11 Lloyd’s syndicate service companies in the DIFC and five coverholders in the Middle East writing specialist reinsurance business from across the region.
Lloyd’s provides tailored reinsurance cover for a diverse range of risks in the Middle East, including: marine and energy, property, construction and engineering, terrorism, political risk and trade credit, casualty, personal accident, professional and financial risks, aviation, and contingency.