XPRIMM TIME FOR BUSINESS How did the Polish market cope with Covid crisis' challenges and what are the expectations for the future?

3 September 2020 — Daniela GHETU
"At this point we do not see a strong effect yet on the financial figures of the insurance companies, but this is mainly due to the long-term nature of the business", Iwona SZCZESNA, the Head of the PIU (Polish Chamber of Insurance) Brussels Office stated at the microphone of the XTB show aired on 2 September. She added that "usually people buy insurance for the whole year, so we will see the impact on the financial figures in three to six months from now."

The show was the first in series launched by XPRIMM under the titles XPRIMM TIME FOR BUSINESS (XTB): Re/insurance markets facing the Covid crisis. The show that will be aired any two weeks, on Wednesday at 14.00 EEST, is dedicated to the insurance markets in the Central and Southeastern Europe. Its first edition brought into the limelight the Polish insurance market.



Speaking about the impact that the Coronavirus outbreak had on the Polish economy, Prof. Krzysztof JAJUGA, Wroclaw University of Economics, President of CFA Society Poland said: "For the first time in 25-30 years Poland has a negative GDP growth rate, which was not even the case during the financial crisis in 2008, when economy was still growing at 1.7%. Now according to recent data published by the central statistical office, in the second quarter, the economy fell by more than 8% y-o-y, whereas in the first quarter it was up by 2%, so we have a dramatic decrease of the GDP growth rate." He explained that the biggest negative contribution was brought by the investment sector, with more than 10% y-o-y, while consumption fell like less than 10%. "Unfortunately, as we can see in the third quarter, I see no signs of recovery. Most probable, we will get close to how things were before the Covid crisis somewhere in the second half of 2021."

On the reinsurance side, according to Jacek KUGACZ, CEO, Polish Re, while until now the Covid crisis didn't have a strong impact, changes are expected for the future renewals. "The annual renewal from 2021 will come with more expectations from the reinsurance market to include pandemic clauses or to maybe some items to increase the prices. However, I don`t believe the changes will be significant. I say that thinking at, for example, the Covid-19 clauses relate to property losses, which come to prove once again that we don`t have much direct influence of the Covid clauses over property clauses."

For the time being, the most visible impact of the current crisis was seen mostly in what the consumer behavior and expectations are concerned. People are more attentive to the coverages and general conditions of the products they want to buy. "This is a quite positive development, as it shows that people want to learn more and better understand their insurance policies," said Iwona SZCZESNA. She also spoke about the emerging risks, as cyber or the more and more accidents related to working from home, but also about the need to continue paying attention to already existing challenges as the "the climate change, that will not change anytime soon."

To find out all that the three guests of the XTB show had to say about the Polish market's evolution and perspectives in 2020, visit the XPRIMM YouTube channel and watch the XTB show Re/insurance markets facing the Covid crisis - POLAND.

Subscribe to the XPRIMM YouTube channel to stay tuned with the CEE markets' evolution.

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