Insurance covering hurricanes and earthquakes

ST JOHN’S — Antigua & Barbuda would be able to realise insurance payouts if the country suffers damage from a hurricane or earthquake this year into next.

This is because the twin-island has been identified as one of 16 member governments of the Caribbean Catastrophe Risk Insurance Facility that have renewed hurricane and earthquake insurance for the 2013/14 policy year that started on June 1.

Since the inception of CCRIF in 2007, and despite increasing economic and financial pressures, Antigua & Barbuda along with Anguilla, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Bermuda, Cayman Islands, Dominica, Grenada, Haiti, Jamaica, St Kitts/Nevis, St Lucia, St Vincent & The Grenadines, Trinidad & Tobago and Turks & Caicos Islands recognised the value of including CCRIF’s hurricane and earthquake coverage in their national disaster risk management strategies.

“This year was no different, especially given that the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration predicted an active 2013 Atlantic Hurricane Season with more and stronger hurricanes than usual,” a CCRIF communiqu√ said.

“For the six-month hurricane season, which began June 1, NOAA stated there was a 70 per cent likelihood of 13 to 20 named storms — well above the seasonal average of 12 named storms.”

The organisation also took note of the budgetary constraints experienced by countries across the region, and took the decision to minimise premium costs. Also, because no payouts were made by CCRIF in 2012/13, 2013/14 policies, CCRIF offered a 25 per cent discount on premiums resulting in an underwriting surplus for the organisation, which is run as a non-profit entity.

According to the release, member countries could also apply a portion of their Participation Fee (a deposit paid when they initially became a CCRIF member) toward their premium payment and had the option to lower the minimum attachment point for tropical cyclones (hurricanes) from a 15-year to a 10-year return period. (Antigua Observer)

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