Chief executive Inga Beale on plans to build insurance business in the GCC
Lloyd’s chief executive Inga Beale has reinforced a promise to grow insurance business in Qatar and the GCC.
Speaking at the Multaqa conference in Qatar ahead of launching the Lloyd’s specialist underwriting platform in Dubai on Wednesday, Beale outlined how Lloyd’s will grow in the region.
Beale said that against a backdrop of slow economic growth, economic power is shifting away from western economies to high-growth regions such as Latin America, Asia and the Middle East.
Beale said: “By 2025 Asia and Latin America will account for half of the GDP output but as these rapidly growing economies have lower insurance penetration levels, there are great opportunities for insurers to demonstrate their value and what they can do to support these growing markets.
“As these higher growth markets open up, the London market, while still the leading reinsurance market by some margin, is facing increased competition from other major financial centres.
“A recent report by Boston Consulting Group (BCG) entitled, London Matters, indicates that the market is at a tipping point.
“But at Lloyd’s, we don’t regard these challenges as threats, we need to face up to these challenges and tackle them head on.”
As such Lloyd’s has developed a 10-year strategy, Vision 2025, and underpinning that plan is an objective to become more international.
Beale said: “My view is that the industry is at a crossroad and therefore we need to grasp opportunities. I read the BCG report, and saw exciting opportunities –opportunities for Lloyd’s to grow its global market, to develop innovative products and reinforce its leading position in the industry.
“Let me be clear, I don’t see this as a nice-to-do, I see this as a must do – an approach we have to take if we are to continue in an increasingly competitive market.
“The establishment of Lloyd’s specialist underwriting platform in Dubai, which officially opens in the next few days, is a great example of how we are delivering against our 2025 objectives.”
In addition to Dubai, Lloyd’s has been making headway in the Qatar. In June last year, the Qatar Insurance Company, the largest insurance company in the region, bought Antares, a specialist insurance and reinsurance group operating in the Lloyd’s market.
Around the same time, Qatar Re, the reinsurance arm of GIC, announced it will provide capital support to Lloyd’s syndicates.
Beale concluded her keynote presentation by spelling out the aims and objectives of Lloyd’s international vision:
· to become the market for international insurers and new entrants to the Lloyd’s will be and are encouraged;
· to have a globally diverse reputation, bringing in a new specialist business and experts from around the world.
· to encourage active participation in the Lloyd’s market provide easy access to services regardless of where in the world its clients are.