Senior representatives from European insurance supervisors, reinsurers, insurers, and academics met for a one-day Roundtable event at Goethe University in Frankfurt on February 16, 2023, to discuss insurance and regulation.
The Roundtable took place on 16 February 2023 at the Goethe University, Frankfurt am Main. The event brought together around 70 participants representing senior delegates from the six largest European insurance supervisors, EIOPA, European Commission, all major reinsurers, and insurers (cedents) active in the European life (re)insurance market, as well as academics from prominent research institutions in Europe in the field of insurance and regulation. The one-day event consisted of presentations followed by the participants’ discussions as well as a longer moderated roundtable discussion.
These notes summarize the speakers’ contributions, questions, and views from the audience in conjunction with presentations, and the subsequent discussions at the European Life Reinsurance Roundtable hosted by the International Center for Insurance Regulation Goethe University and the Institute of Insurance Economics, University of St. Gallen. As such, the notes will not solely represent the views of each presenter, but also reflect contributions of the interactive and engaging discussions.
The event gave rise to very active exchanges between participants, and the following five themes crystalized across the sessions:
- The interest in de-risking insurers’ balance sheets has been steadily growing in Europe for the past few years. Life insurers have different options to reduce their exposure to guaranteed legacy business; funded reinsurance, along with hedging through derivative contracts, are the options where the insurer remains the ultimate debtor and retains customer contact.
- Close and continuous dialogue between insurers, reinsurers, and regulators (i.e., transparent dialogue from the beginning of a transaction) is vital to arrive at a suitable transaction.
- With the purpose of life insurance being to provide policyholders with sound alternatives for their savings and pensions, policyholders must be central in every transaction.
- Supervisory and regulatory harmonisation across Europe is an important element in achieving a level playing field which benefits policyholders and other stakeholders.
- We can learn from the U.K. and U.S. reinsurance experience; a common element is that time and effort are required for the industry to accept funded reinsurance as an established tool for insurers.