Reinsurance News

DIFC premium growth reaches new high in 2019

8th June 2020 - Author: Luke Gallin

The Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), the leading financial hub in the Middle East, Africa and Southeast Asia, has revealed that the sector grew by 17.4% in 2019.

Dubai skylineAnnual growth of more than 17% represents the highest volume of premiums ever written in the marketplace, reinforcing the DIFC’s position as a leading regional hub for reinsurance business.

In the first-quarter of 2020, the DIFC recorded gross written premiums (GWP) of $472 million, which is in line with the same period a year earlier.

According to the DIFC, growth was characterised by reinsurers, coverholders, managing general agents, and reinsurance brokers prioritising the Centre’s “enabling and dynamic” business environment over other international financial centres to gain access to markets in the MEASA region.

The DIFC is now home to over 100 registered insurers, reinsurers, captives, and insurance-related entities that serve the market, including the likes of Munich Re, Lloyd’s, Berkshire Hathaway, RGA, Korean Re, AIG, Zurich, Marsh, and Aon.

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The Centre has also noted the global rise of InsurTech entities, with ten technology-focused insurers now registered at the DIFC.

The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the DIFC Authority, Arif Amiri, commented: “Our strong performance in reinsurance sector in Q1 2020 and throughout 2019 stems from our long standing commitment to the sector. Whilst providing the most proven legal and regulatory frameworks for insurance and reinsurance leaders in the region, our approach also allows InsurTech start-ups to collaborate with top reinsurance leaders in DIFC to address tomorrow’s requirements.

“As part of our focus on shaping the future of finance, we are embracing digitalisation, collaboration and talent which can deliver large-scale changes in the sector and create the next generation of financial services professionals. This is especially important as the insurance sector continues to evolve which requires us to be in a position to meet the industry’s evolving requirements, underlining our commitment to leading reinsurance sector growth in the region.”

The Centre notes that it plans to attract additional reinsurers from across Europe and Asia in order to increase its capacity, and to provide a global platform to regional players for their international growth ambitions.

At the end of last year, the DIFC signed two key memorandums of understandings (MoU), one with Lloyd’s and another with the Chartered Insurance Institute (CII), designed to drive the region’s re/insurance sector by upskilling talent as well as promoting efficiency and improvement.

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