International insurance regulators set up new forum to address sustainability concerns
Written by Staff Reporter
A new international network of insurance regulators and supervisors has been launched to promote cooperation on critical sustainable insurance challenges, such as climate change.
Held in San Francisco, the first meeting of the Sustainable Insurance Forum included insurance supervisors and regulators from Brazil, California, France, Ghana, Jamaica, Morocco, the Netherlands, Singapore and the UK, as well as the International Association of Insurance Supervisors.
The role of the insurance sector is seen as pivotal to an effective response to sustainable development, in particular in providing coverage against natural disasters as well as integrating environmental, social and governance factors into the management of their assets. Increasingly, insurance regulators and supervisors are exploring how these factors impact upon their goals of ensuring the safety, soundness and accountability of the sector, and those behind the Forum believe it will provide an international platform for insurance regulatory and supervisory bodies to share experience and explore common approaches.
The California Department of Insurance and UN Environment co-hosted the inaugural meeting of the Forum. California's Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones said: “Insurance regulators have an important role to ensure that critical sustainability risks and opportunities are effectively managed. The new Forum will enable supervisors to learn from each other and take common action against shared threats to the insurance sector such as climate change.”
The Forum aims to build on UN Environment’s long-standing work on sustainable insurance, with the organisation also providing the Forum's secretariat. UN Environment is home for the Principles for Sustainable Insurance, which provides a structured framework for insurance companies to integrate environmental, social and governmental factors into their operations.
David Rule, Executive Director of Insurance Supervision at the UK’s Prudential Regulatory Authority, added: “The potential for an international network to share experience among regulators was highlighted in our landmark review of the insurance sector and climate change. We are delighted that this seed of an idea has now come to fruition.”