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Manila’s proposed catastrophe insurance pool faces uncertainty

Manila’s proposed catastrophe insurance pool faces uncertainty

Manila’s proposed catastrophe insurance pool faces uncertainty
Philippines President Benigno Aquino III has yet to sign an executive order (EO) on the proposed catastrophe pool that seeks to cover businesses and houses in the ever-growing metropolitan Manila.
 
The draft EO that will require all households and micro-, small- and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) in the capital region to have insurance under a catastrophe pool does not appear to be forthcoming in Aquino’s last two months in office, the newspaper Business Mirror reported.
 
According to the report, the Department of Finance recommended the draft EO to Aquino’s office last year.  However, the office returned the draft EO with comments questioning the mandatory insurance coverage for households and MSMEs to be insured under the catastrophe pool insurance scheme.
 
With the proposed catastrophe pool now in limbo, a total of US$101.09 billion in total GDP in Metro Manila remains at risk of being lost without any insurance cover in the event of a powerful earthquake, according to the Lloyd’s City Risk Index.
 
Lloyd’s said Metro Manila is fourth in the world in terms of total assets that are at risk of being lost without insurance coverage.
 
“Since we’re No. 4 [in terms of the amount of assets at risk of being lost without insurance cover], it’s very important to establish [the catastrophe pool] the soonest,”  ASEAN Insurance Council chairman Michael Rellosa told Business Mirror.
 
Philippines Insurance Commissioner Emmanuel Dooc is among those supporting the proposed catastrophe insurance pool.
 
“Developing a financially sound and sustainable catastrophe insurance pool is just fitting and timely. Ultimately, this initiative reduces to a large extent the potential liabilities and risks on people and properties,” Business Mirror quoted Dooc as saying.