UK insurance industry working with Pool Re to develop pandemic cover

A man wearing a protective face mask and gloves walks over Westminster bridge as the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) continues, London, Britain, April 21, 2020. REUTERS/Peter Nicholls

(Reuters) – The UK insurance industry has formed a steering committee comprising several top insurance company bosses who will work with government-backed terrorism reinsurance fund Pool Re to develop a pandemic cover, the group said on Tuesday.

Britain is in a lockdown due to the coronavirus, with many companies shuttered and some facing the threat of collapse, while millions of workers have been furloughed as the country heads for a deep recession.

The steering group, which is chaired by Stephen Catlin, the chief executive officer of specialist insurer and reinsurer Convex Group, will propose an industry pandemic response to both the government and the country, it said.

“The insurance industry needs to be on the front foot in the current situation, paying claims quickly and continuing to provide people and businesses with the protection they require,” Catlin said in a statement.

“Most importantly, we need to find an industry solution for future pandemics and this group has many years of combined industry experience.”

Members of the committee also include Aviva’s (AV.L) Maurice Tulloch and RSA Insurance Group’s (RSA.L) Stephen Hester, among four others, while other participants will be invited to join in due course, the group added.

The Association of British Insurers said on Monday it was talking to the UK government about support for trade credit insurance to help business supply chains due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Last Wednesday, Britain’s Financial Conduct Authority said most insurance policies bought by smaller companies do not cover for disruption caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

Reporting by Yadarisa Shabong in Bengaluru; Editing by Vinay Dwivedi

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