FOR IMMEDIATE PUBLICATION
Alliance calls on Government to get serious with insurers
The Alliance for Insurance Reform has today published a set of case studies of liability insurance premiums in the Republic and comparable operations in Northern Ireland and Germany which show the extent to which liability policyholders in the Republic of Ireland are being taken for a ride by incumbent insurers. The Alliance has called on the Government to get serious with insurers about the urgent delivery of the benefits of insurance reforms.
Examples of premiums paid for similar operations south and north of the border include:
Northern Ireland €2,679
Republic of Ireland €17,500
Multiple 6.5 times higher in the Republic
Northern Ireland €1,089
Republic of Ireland €5,245
Northern Ireland €6,079
Republic of Ireland €39,100
Northern Ireland €4,104
Republic of Ireland €11,995
Northern Ireland €749 for a new thatch building
Republic of Ireland: 1% of the value of the building, so from approximately €3,000 upwards
Multiple 4.0 upwards
TREE ADVENTURE PARKS – COMPARISONS WITH GERMANY
The three Zipit tree adventure parks in Farran in Cork, Tibradden in Dublin and Lough Key in Roscommon, currently pay a combined annual premium of €250,000.
Squirrels’ Scramble tree adventure park in Kilruddery, Bray currently pays €60,000 per annum in insurance.
The six Natur Bewegt tree adventure parks in Germany pay €3,000 between them.
Multiple: 20.0 to 27.7
According to Bill Cremin, Managing Director of Zipit, “One of our German colleagues said recently that what we pay for insurance would cover the insurance costs of the entire sector (high ropes specifically) in Germany”.
(Ref: RTE Adventure tourism firms face closure due to high insurance costs).There are approximately 140 such businesses in Germany.
In the same RTE article, President of the European Confederation of Outdoor Employers Jean Yves Lapeyère is quoted as saying that “The issue of having to stop trading, because the insurance is too expensive is exclusive to Ireland.” He said that “In no country do we hear of outdoor companies having to stop trading because their premium is too high.” “The problem at this level is Irish, 100% Irish,” he added.
(Ref: RTE Adventure tourism firms face closure due to high insurance costs).
NOTE: All policy premiums are for combined public liability, employer liability and property insurance. All figures in Euros. Sterling converted at €1.13. Case studies are for similar sized and structured businesses in similar locations. Most organisations that participated in the case studies were not willing to reveal their identity. In the Republic, this was because they are down to one underwriter and are afraid of repercussions if they reveal their identity. In the North, it was down to a reluctance to publicly engage in “the Republic’s problem”.
In general, Irish organisations are recognised by their European counterparts to have top-class risk management and health and safety systems in place.
Peter Boland, Director of the Alliance said “Huge effort has gone into insurance reform by Government, the Opposition, the Judiciary, An Garda Siochana and policyholders. But insurers, both underwriters and brokers, are pocketing the benefits. Indeed, liability insurance premiums are actually continuing to increase despite the reforms being delivered, with an average premium increase of 14% recorded in our ongoing members’ survey in 2022.
“Government is tiptoeing around insurers, afraid of upsetting them in case they leave the market. In reality, the high-profile insurer casualties of recent years have been down to issues such as mismanagement, incompetence, Brexit and corporate priorities, not market conditions. It is time for Government to get the gloves off with the incumbent insurers, get more competition into the market and put measures in place to cover sectors that insurers are simply not interested in covering. This limbo policyholders are in right now, as we wait interminably for reforms to kick in, must come to an end. Otherwise, Government will have dropped the low-hanging fruit, the one crisis that is close to being resolved. One that they have worked hard on but failed to deliver. The Alliance shares the view of the Taoiseach that ‘The success of the (Government Action) plan will be measured by the reduction in premiums and improved competition’, and insurers must play their part in delivering to that commitment.”
NOTE: The Alliance for Insurance Reform brings together 48 civic and business organisations from across Ireland, representing over 55,000 members, 700,000 employees, 622,000 volunteers and 374,000 students in highlighting the negative impact of persistently high premiums and calling for real reforms that will quickly reduce liability and motor insurance premiums to affordable levels and keep them that way. Our members include:
AOIFE Ireland (Association of Irish Festival Events)Car Rental Council of IrelandChildminding IrelandCoach Tourism & Transport Council of IrelandCommunity Reuse Network IrelandConvenience Stores and Newsagents AssociationCork Business AssociationDisability Federation of IrelandEarly Childhood IrelandFamily Business Network IrelandFederation of Irish SportGalway ChamberGalway County Public Participation Network (PPN)Historic Houses of IrelandHome and Community Care IrelandIncoming Tour Operators Association IrelandIreland ActiveIreland’s Association for Adventure TourismIrish Caravan and Camping CouncilIrish Charity Shops AssociationIrish Concrete FederationIrish Contract Cleaners AssociationIrish Hotels FederationIrish Road Haulage AssociationIrish Showman’s GuildIrish Street Arts, Circus and Spectacle NetworkIrish Travel Agents AssociationISMELicensed Vintners AssociationMotorsport IrelandNational Campaign for the ArtsNational Community Care NetworkNursing Homes IrelandPlay Activity and Leisure IrelandQuick Service Food AllianceRestaurants Association of IrelandRetail ExcellenceRGDATASligo PPNSociety of the Irish Motor IndustrySouth Dublin County PPNSport IrelandThatch Insurance Action GroupTheatre ForumUnion of Students in IrelandVintners Federation of IrelandVolunteer IrelandThe Wheel (Ireland’s national association for community, voluntary and charitable organisations)
For further information contact:
ALLIANCE FOR INSURANCE REFORM
TEL: 086 826 6036
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