Welcome to SIRC Today

While the 17th annual Singapore International Reinsurance Conference (SIRC) has been delayed for a year due to COVID-19, its organisers have instead launched SIRC 2020 Re-Mind, a virtual conference taking place this week.

The event has a full agenda of senior executives from the region commenting on the most pertinent issues of the day—all of which we are reporting on as usual in our annual newsletter SIRC Today.

Coverage of the virtual event will be complemented by interviews, news stories and reports from the region.

In the following pages, readers will find insight and news from industry leaders speaking at and around the virtual event.

As in previous years, we endeavour to bring our readers high-level market insights and ensure their fingers stay on the pulse of the re/insurance industry in these unprecedented times.

Wyn Jenkins, managing editor, Intelligent Insurer

A sneak preview: more exclusive content and interviews inside

Asia-Pacific key to Hannover Re’s growth objectives

Hannover Re wants to explore growth in a sustainable way, Michael Pickel, member of the executive board, property/casualty, Hannover Re, told SIRC Today.

“The region is a very important part of our growth plans—one of our strategic initiatives is to grow the Asian portfolio in line with the cycle,” he said.

“There is no doubt that it is a growing region but we will not seek growth for growth’s sake there. We always seek a more selective approach; we want to be the best in class.”

As a region, Asia-Pacific has been growing faster than Hannover Re’s core markets in Europe and the Americas. In 2020, Hannover Re wrote a total of around €5.5 billion ($6.2 billion) in gross premiums in the Asia-Pacific region.

Its property & casualty reinsurance premium in 2020 increased by 25.7 percent and in life & health reinsurance by 14.8 percent compared to 2019.

The reinsurer has not indicated what sort of growth it is expecting in 2021, but it has said it is seeking an additional €140 million EBIT (earnings before interest and tax) by 2023, an ambition it has said it is on track to hit.

A sneak preview: more exclusive content and interviews inside

Reaping the rewards of investing in Asia

Beazley’s Lucien Mounier on what the company is doing right in a region that offers so much opportunity.

COVID-19 created opportunities in cyber and life

Some have resulted directly from the pandemic, says Jessica Pratiwi of Fitch Ratings.

A sneak preview: more exclusive content and interviews inside

Playing the long game in Asia

Asia presents tremendous opportunities for growth, but it has to be sustainable, insists Javier Sánchez Cea, reinsurer Mapfre Re’s regional head.

Mapfre Re, the professional reinsurer of Spanish multinational insurance company Mapfre, has long had a presence in Asia. It opened its Manila office back in 1986, only its third after Spain and Mexico.

That has expanded more recently, with new branches in Labuan and Singapore in 2014 and 2015, respectively, and authorisation for its own representative office in Beijing in 2015. In 2017 a new representative office opened in Tokyo.