“The government has deferred or waived a number of taxes, fees, and levies and I have asked icare to do the same despite the scheme being heavily impacted by market volatility associated with coronavirus.”
This was the statement made by New South Wales Treasurer Dominic Perrottet when it confirmed on May 26 that premium rates for the Nominal Insurer will remain unchanged from June 30, in a move they said will save businesses across the state more than $325 million. Managed by icare, the Nominal Insurer protects over 325,000 businesses and their 3.2 million workers.
“Despite economic pressures on the scheme, we understand the difficulties our customers are facing during COVID-19 and the importance of helping them get back on their feet and getting the people of NSW back into jobs,” said icare chief executive John Nagle. “That’s why we’re maintaining premiums at 1.40% of average base wages, the same as they’ve been since 2014.
“We work hard to keep premiums as low as possible for NSW businesses, and despite the recent volatile economic conditions which have impacted our investment returns and our funding ratio, we have the financial strength of $38 billion in investments to absorb the initial impacts and rebalance the funding gradually in the coming years as the economy recovers.”
The workers’ compensation insurer, which has already paused more than $43 million in premiums for 2,000 customers facing financial hardship, has also reduced premiums by $52 million for over 10,000 businesses that have adjusted their estimated wages as a result of challenges related to the coronavirus crisis.
In a separate development, icare has hired TAL alumnus Caroline Rockett as group executive, digital and technology. Rockett most recently served as chief information officer at Velocity Frequent Flyer and will be in charge of driving forward icare’s digitisation.