Jérôme Maurice (APCAL):
A thriving sector
While last year was great for growth, in 2018 Luxembourg insurers intend to confirm Luxembourg’s new “global” status in the sector, and in particular take advantage of Brexit and make a success of the digital transition, announces Jerome Maurice, Director at APCAL.
There’s no question of resting on our laurels! The 2018 schedule for the 70 or so independent agents or companies that are members of the “Association Professionnelle des Courtiers en Assurances du Luxembourg” (APCAL), is already packed. The organisation will of course, in the main, continue to promote its philosophy of “independent, personalised advice”. However, the need to comply with European Directives will mobilise activity in the sector. APCAL will support its members in complying with these new requirements, which focus on “pre-contractual information”. It is not just about identifying customers’ needs better and offering them the most appropriate solutions; brokers must also demonstrate absolute transparency when it comes to services and remuneration. Professionals will also confirm their commitment to anti-money laundering measures. Ethical objectives that are profitable to everyone, insurers and customers! The development of continuous training and the focus on new technologies will help to meet these challenges.
“The development of continuous training and the focus on new technologies will help to meet these challenges.”
The roadmap is the best way for Luxembourg insurers to confirm the 2017 results. The figures speak for themselves: nearly 15% growth in the premiums collected during the first nine months and for “non-life assurance” alone, a rise of 4.35%, led mainly by a local market supported by the country's demographic and economic growth. These are positive indicators, but the experts suggest that the best is yet to come. The market should benefit from the Brexit effect. Major British companies such as AIG, FM Global, CNA Hardy, Hiscox, RSA Insurance Group, Liberty or Britannia have branches in Luxembourg. Luxembourg also appears to be one of the global capitals in the sector that is attractive to Japanese companies, such as Tokio Marine. The Free Provision of Services life assurance market is also showing an increase of around 17% over the first three quarters, close to an historical record.
The digital challenge
As an insurance stronghold, and now a key international player, Luxembourg cannot sidestep the challenges or the opportunities created by the digital revolution. The directors of APCAL are therefore keen for national players in the sector to take on board new technologies in the best possible manner. The analysis and training provided is designed to support APCAL members, firstly to simplify the process of collecting and entering information (by the professionals) and then to improve access to information in the policies (by the customers). Another key feature these new tools offer is checking potential policyholders and their assets. Luxembourg brokers need to master these tools, to make the most of a particularly favourable economic climate. Following a bumper harvest in 2017, 2018 is definitely showing every sign of being a very high quality vintage...