The BOD of the ACAL met with the Insurance Control Commission in the first visit to the regulator following its election. The Acting Head of the ICC, Mrs. Nadine El Habbal, renewed its wishes for a successful mandate, and stated that the consultation process with the sector, represented by the BOD of the ACAL, will continue to bear positive fruits for all stakeholders, namely the insured persons. The discussions covered a broad range of topics and challenges of relevance to the present economic context as presented by ACAL’s president, Mr. Elie Torbey, turning the meeting into a thorough round-table discussion.
Governance and segregation of duties were the main considerations debated, in view of their relevance at all levels. Not only good governance can enhance the technical and financial performance of the sector and foster sustainable growth, it also has a major impact on the image of the sector and its stated ambitions to become an insurance platform that can service the Levant region in the years to come. Good practices would also lead to an improved rating of the financial services sector in Lebanon, boosting the country’s perception among foreign investors.
The Commission has implemented its own internal governance, and is exercising its supervisory efforts in line with a risk-based-supervision philosophy. The control focuses on benefit levels, prudential reporting and market conduct, while the insurance companies have a reasonable level of flexibility in designing and pricing insurance products and services. This approach is fully aligned with the free-market economy; it encourages creativity in developing new products, services, and distribution channels.
The ICC announced that Hannover Re committed to cease all business with entities not licensed to sell insurance products to the public as from the coming renewal dates of the arrangements in-force. Hannover Re confirmed its commitment to Lebanon, and will continue to increase its support to the licensed insurance firms. This development represents a major achievement in mitigating the risk of unlawful competition, which has disrupted the market in the previous years.