By Anca Voinea
Every year, the leaders of the world’s largest economies gather to develop strategies to deal with global challenges; as this year’s host, Argentina decided to hold a session on insurance – the first of its kind at a G20 summit. It is hoped the event will position the insurance sector, including regulators and the industry, as a distinct stakeholder in future G20 events.
The forum, which ran from 25-26 September in Bariloche, was chaired by Adrián Werthein, shareholder of Experta ART, with four co-chair including Alejandro Simón, chief executive of mutual insurer Sancor Seguros, a member of the International Co-operative and Mutual Insurers Federation (ICMIF).
ICMIF members Sancor Seguros, La Segunda, San Cristóbal and ADIRA all supported the project and helped to host the Forum. Also in attendance was another ICMIF member, Rio Uruguay Seguros. ICMIF chief executive, Shaun Tarbuck, took part in the opening session on building resilient economies while Graham Clark of Asia Affinity Holdings Ltd (Hong Kong), also a member of ICMIF, spoke in a session on food security.
The discussion focused on how the insurance sector can support resilience and stability by providing financial protection to individuals and businesses.
“It is a historical milestone for insurance supervision and insurance industry,” said Juan Pazo, superintendent of Insurance of Argentina. “Argentina’s G20 priorities are the future of work, infrastructure for development, and food security; issues directly connected with the insurance industry.”
In a video message to welcome delegates, Argentina’s president Mauricio Macri said: “It is the task of this government to create the right and adequate conditions so that insurance companies, as major long-term investors, can finance projects in the real economy and, in this way, directly benefit the development of our country by generating genuine employment.”
Also discussed were the promotion of long-term investment in infrastructure, building resilient communities, digital and cybersecurity challenges facing the insurance sector, and cross-border reinsurance.
Speaking about the G20 Insurance Forum, Mr Tarbuck said: “Here at ICMIF we strongly believe in the role of insurance to face global challenges, and we believe that this Forum will be a historical milestone for insurance supervision, legislation and the insurance industry. Discussions related to sustainable development, barriers for long-term investment in infrastructure, technological innovation, and financial stability, cannot be fully addressed without the voice of the insurance sector. The industry is a key stakeholder for addressing many challenges, not only through the development of innovative products to improve economic resilience, but also as a catalyst for resources towards common goals.”
“The overall objective was to present the G20 leaders with the role of insurers as solution providers to some of the most pressing problems facing the world today. We illustrated the important role of insurance by showing concrete ways how the insurance industry can provide solutions based on sound insurance principles,” he concluded.