The Turnbull government announced this week the launch of a year-long public inquiry into the financial services industry, including insurance companies – a move general insurers said they are well prepared for.
Insurance Council of Australia
(ICA) CEO Rob Whelan said the industry is “ready to contribute” to the royal commission, which it hopes “will end political uncertainty and improve public confidence in the insurance sector.”
“The Insurance Council is reviewing the draft terms of reference and will provide input to the government,” Whelan said.
The ICA boss also noted that the numerous government-initiated inquiries and reports over the past six years “concluded that the general insurance industry, which pays more than 97% of claims, does not have systemic issues that need addressing.”
“They have reported that insurers operate in a competitive market and are appropriately pricing to risk, and that government investments in mitigation and resilience measures are the only sustainable ways to lower premiums in high-risk areas,” he said. “The general insurance industry is one of the most heavily regulated and scrutinised sectors of the Australian economy, with strong consumer protections.”
also backed the government initiative, saying that any measures that will arise from the inquiry that will deliver positive outcomes to customers will be to “everyone’s best interests.”
“We are fully committed to supporting this inquiry, as we have with all other inquiries that the government has instigated, and will work hard to ensure our contribution is valuable,” said CEO and Managing Director Michael Cameron
. “It is important the inquiry includes the non-ADI lenders, is not open-ended, and reports back in a timely manner so that the sector can have certainty moving forward.”
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