British officials will hold their first meeting with insurers today on how they’ll deal with record floods that have so far caused an estimated 600 million pounds ($1 billion) in damage.
Cabinet Office ministers Oliver Letwin and Jo Johnson are among U.K. officials holding talks today with the chief executive officers of Aviva Plc, Direct Line Insurance Group Plc, Axa SA, Lloyds Banking Group Plc and Ageas, according to a statement yesterday.
“Ministers have requested an operational briefing on the immediate and longer-term practical recovery process to getting people back on their feet after the flooding, and the steps the industry is taking to ensure this process is as quick and simple as possible,” according to the statement issued by Prime Minister David Cameron’s office.
While Ernst & Young issued the 600 million-pound damage estimate, the Financial Times has reported insurance industry executives seeing as much as 3.5 billion pounds needed to recover. Britain is reeling from a series of storms since December that saturated the ground, overwhelmed rivers across the south and battered the coasts. While floods along the Thames and in Somerset may have peaked, waters might take weeks to drain in some areas, the Environment Agency said.