CROATIA Osiguranje has paid EUR 26 million in losses after the Croatian earthquakes in 2020

14 April 2021 — Daniela GHETU
CROATIA Osiguranje has paid claims close to HRK 195 million (~EUR 26 million) for the losses caused by the two Croatian earthquakes last year, while at market level, total insured losses from the two events may amount to about HRK 600 million, Davor Tomaskovic, the company's CEO, has stated in an interview published by osiguranje.hr.

He also explaining that the figures include the full impact of both earthquakes losses, because claims expenses are expressed according to the date of the event, regardless of when the payments were made.

Tomaskovic has also said that, according CROATIA Osiguranje's estimate, "the growth rate of earthquake risk insurance in 2020 is more than 30% compared to 2019." Yet, the trend could be significantly stronger if the state would change its approach towards helping citizens coping with the losses caused by natural hazards. Currently, "the state establishes funds, allocates money and takes care of reconstruction, while it would be much more efficient to insure against natural disasters for property as it is mandatory for cars, so the cost of reconstruction would be borne by insurers, and they would be financed from collected premiums in the years without an earthquake," he explained. In fact, in the aftermath of the 2020 earthquakes, the rather low efficiency of the state aid was visible, many of those affected finding themselves still in a precarious state.

Tomaskovic has also stressed out that, given the last strong earthquake occurred some 140 years ago in Croatia, both insurers and customers have given little concern to the earthquake insurance coverage. "Thus, for example, a franchise denoting a client's share in covering the losses is not known to some clients even though they have had a discount on the premium for years due to franchising." Acknowledging that, in part, insurers are also at fault for explaining properly, CROATIA Osiguranje has decided to "fully cover the damage to all cars, although most did not have earthquake coverage, and reduced the deductible on the property where it was justified and thus covered more than HRK 15 million of damage outside the coverage."

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