European Commission Approves inreon Online Reinsurance Exchange

May 27, 2002

The European Commission, the European Union’s highest regulatory authority, has approved inreon the joint venture established by Swiss Re and Munich Re in December 2000, to provide online reinsurance exchange services.

The platform, which enables insurers and insurance brokers to obtain bids from reinsurers on big property and catastrophic risks and conclude reinsurance contracts online, has been operating for over two years, but the companies had sought the reassurance of a ruling by the Commission that inreon does not violate competition rules in the European Union.

“The Commission has concluded that the notified operation does not currently restrict competition within the meaning of Article 81(1) of the EU treaty,” said the announcement.

inreon’s bulletin went on to state that, “The Commission has already gained extensive experience in the assessment of such electronic marketplaces, whether they include suppliers, distributors, providers or buyers of business services. Such electronic exchanges are generally expected to be pro-competitive as they create more transparency between demand and supply and reduce costs.”

“However, they can also present competition problems if the platform is used to exchange market-sensitive information, for example on prices or output, to shut competitors out of the market or to join buying or selling forces. After a detailed investigation, the Commission has considered that the notified operation , provides adequate safeguards to ensure that the parent companies and other participants in inreon do not have access to confidential information on their competitors.”|”european, commission, approves, inreon, online, reinsurance, exchange

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