Insurance sector plays a key role in achieving the priorities of G20 to a resilient economy

10 June 2021 — Alexandra GUZUN
Members of GFIA and ANIA, together with the Italian Minister of Economy and Finance, met in a virtual meeting to discuss about the disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and the high degree of resilience shown by the global insurance industry during the crisis.

The meeting between the president of the Global Federation of Insurance Associations (GFIA), Don Forgeron, together with members of GFIA's executive committee and the president of the Associazione Nazionale fra le Imprese Assicuratrici (ANIA), Maria Bianca Farina, with the participation of the Italian Minister of Economy and Finance, Daniele Franco, who represented the G20 Italian presidency has held virtual and pointed out also the importance of the insurers to support G20 in facilitating more sustainable and resilient economies.

During the discussion, GFIA members highlighted the key challenges that the industry is facing, namely the limited supply of suitable sustainable assets, and the lack of ESG data on investee companies.

Insurers take the view that the Italian G20 Presidency is rightly focusing on the much-needed economic recovery from COVID-19 and the opportunity it presents to create more sustainable and resilient economies and societies. Furthermore, the insurance industry is uniquely positioned to contribute towards this objective.

With more than USD 30 trillion of assets under management, the industry has a significant capacity and interest in investing in long-term sustainable assets, including infrastructure. Similarly, the industry provides protection to individuals and businesses, and has been working with governments to close protection gaps, which is more important than ever, given the challenges posed by climate change.

In addition, private pension solutions offered by insurers are likely to play an even bigger role in ensuring the adequacy of future retirement provisions, given the increased need for financial safety after retirement as a result of the current crisis, the ageing of populations and the savings gap.

ANIA president, Maria Bianca Farina, commented: "The meeting was very positive and represented a unique opportunity to highlight the key role the insurance sector plays in achieving the priorities set out by the Italian G20 presidency - People, Planet and Prosperity - with particular reference to the economic recovery and the transition to sustainable economies. Indeed, insurers have long been aware about the risks related to climate change, and our expertise makes us the perfect partners for policymakers and public authorities in addressing this issue. Moreover, insurers, as institutional investors, can play a fundamental role in investing in sustainable infrastructures, and as contributors to a sustainable welfare for the future."

GFIA president, Don Forgeron, also commented: "GFIA welcomes the opportunity to discuss how insurers can contribute towards the G20's priorities. Insurers are well placed to provide the infrastructure and other investments needed by governments to support economic recovery after the COVID-19 pandemic. GFIA members recognise that the shift to a more sustainable society will be one of the greatest global challenges of this century and that insurers have a key role to play. As economies around the world decide to shift focus to a sustainable transition, insurers can again help to fund and support this process."

Moreover, Farina announced that ANIA will organise, in cooperation with GFIA, an Insurance Summit in October 2021 in Rome. The event will focus on sustainability, addressing environmental, social and financial sustainability issues, and on how the public and private sectors can work together to protect societies and economies against a broad range of risks. The Summit will involve representatives from the Italian government, financial and economic institutions, regulatory authorities and insurance companies.

Source: GFIA press release

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