The members of the Association of Bermuda Insurers and Reinsurers (ABIR) made a direct contribution of $834.3 million to Bermuda’s economy in 2015, according to the association’s 11th annual ‘Bermuda Economic Impact Survey’.
The survey, of which 21 ABIR member participated in, tallied the total economic contribution of travel and entertainment expenses, payments for business services, charitable contributions, real-estate costs including housing reimbursement, and payroll.
The survey also collected data on the business growth of member companies and regulatory domiciles overseas, as well as charted employment growth in Bermuda.
Stephen Catlin, executive deputy chair of XL Catlin and chair of the ABIR board, said: “Thanks to the dual success of both the Bermuda Monetary Authority winning regulatory recognition with our two main trading partners—the US and the EU—and the Government keeping pace with evolving international standards on tax transparency, reporting and cooperation, Bermuda is the best place from which a global commercial insurer and reinsurer can do business.
“There are headwinds towards further employment growth in Bermuda—such as insurers being under enormous expense stress due to declining profitability in core businesses and political risks on the island, in the US, and in the EU, but we are pleased ABIR members can report modest employment growth in 2015.
“ABIR members employ more than 1,500 people in Bermuda and more than 67 percent are Bermudians, their spouses, or PRC holders. We’re proud of their contribution.”
According to ABIR, the main political risks facing members outside Bermuda included the increasing regulatory restrictions on reinsurance market access by other jurisdictions’ protectionist policies, as well as the dramatic changes in global tax-reporting and disclosure requirements led by the OECD and the EU.
Within Bermuda, the main risk were government fiscal challenges and potential civil unrest tied to local political battles over immigration policy and spending priorities.
Bradley Kading, president and executive director of ABIR, said: “Sometimes it’s easy for political leaders here on the island to forget the world is watching, but actions here do affect Bermuda’s global reputation and can influence its international business and tourism sectors—to the detriment of the local economy.”
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Association of Bermuda Insurers and Reinsurance, Insurance, Reinsurance, Bermuda