For Bermuda’s global insurance and reinsurance market, European policyholders and businesses are becoming increasingly beneficial partners, according to a new study from the Association of Bermuda Insurers & Reinsurers (ABIR).

As of 2017, Bermuda insurers and reinsurers (and ABIR members) operated in 20 European Union countries with a total of 15,865 employees in the region, the study found. Those employees came from underwriting centers and ABIR members in Bermuda, Europe, Asia, North and South America.

ABIR members also had more than 1,000 employees in Switzerland, the study found.

John Huff, ABIR’s president and CEO, said that the European Union market continues to be a “very important” market for Bermuda insurers and reinsurers, especially as they add “increasing amounts of risks in EU member states.

“Our member companies remain strongly committed to the European market, European ceding companies and European policyholders,” Huff added in prepared remarks.

ABIR’s promotion of the study results notes a likely factor that contributes to increased Bermuda/EU insurer interaction. Bermuda’s regulation regime for commercial insurers was found “equivalent” by the EU to Solvency II in March 2016, and it is one of just two non-EU jurisdictions to hold that distinction.

Solvency II is an EU directive that, through equivalence, gives Bermuda’s commercial insurers and reinsurers access to the EU market. Bermuda’s financial regulator, the Bermuda Monetary Authority (BMA), is recognized as group supervisor for its insurance groups that operate in the EU. Equivalence for Solvency II is intended to protect insurers’ and reinsurers’ policyholders and provide a stable financial system.

Bermuda Monetary Authority officials signed a memorandum of understanding with the European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority in January 2017, and it participates in annual EIOPA bi-laterals.

Source: ABIR