Insurers are partnering with the United Nations and other public groups to help the poorest countries bounce back from natural disasters that may become a more regular occurrence.
As part of the program, as much as $5 billion in insurance capacity will be offered to 20 developing countries that are vulnerable to shifts in the climate and willing to work with the groups to increase their resilience, according to a statement Sunday from the Insurance Development Forum, the UN Development Program, the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development and the U.K. Department for International Development.
Insurance executives including Chubb Ltd.’s Evan Greenberg have warned that climate change is a reality bringing a heightened frequency and severity of natural catastrophes. One of the most recent natural disasters, Hurricane Dorian, pummeled the Bahamas earlier this month, causing as much as $6.5 billion in losses for insurers, according to risk modeling firm RMS.
“Given the risks countries face today, our industry has a responsibility to take the lead in driving action that is needed from both the public and private sector,” Denis Duverne, who is chairman of AXA SA and the Insurance Development Forum, said in the statement.
The UN is hosting a climate summit this week to showcase government and business efforts to reduce emissions. Sunday’s announcement also says the U.K. government is contributing up to $110 million to the global risk financing facility, which is co-funded by Germany and was designed for faster financing after a disaster. The Insurance Development Forum said Allianz SE, AXA and Munich Re are among companies that have endorsed this effort.
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