(MENAFN- Khaleej Times) The highly anticipated and widely attended third edition of The Future of Insurance 2023 event concluded on May 30 with immense success. The event brought together thought leaders, industry experts, policymakers, and stakeholders to engage in dynamic discussions, address challenges, and explore opportunities shaping the insurance sector.
Witnessing an exceptional convergence of technology and insurance, this year's summit, held under the captivating theme“Insurance 3.0: Embracing Digital Transformation for a Better Future,” set the stage ablaze with groundbreaking discussions. Thought leaders and industry experts delved into pressing topics that shaped the dynamic agenda, including the roadmap to develop an integrated insurance system for the UAE, the remarkable potential of the UAE Insurance Ecosystem, the takaful industry's growth, opportunities, and challenges, the art of navigating the complexities of merger and acquisitions, the game-changing Insuretech 3.0 revolution, the crucial importance of engaging with the next generation, the roadmap ahead for IFRS 17, and the captivating realm of the future of reinsurance.
The keynote address was delivered by Fareed Lutfi, secretary-general of the Emirates Insurance Association, shedding light on the roadmap to develop an integrated insurance system for the UAE. In his address, Lutfi acknowledged the challenges faced by the insurance industry in 2022, including global market turbulence and rising inflation, which significantly impacted their operations. These challenges manifested in two ways: a decline in investment income due to subdued investment performance and a drop in underwriting profits caused by a highly competitive market, inflation-related claims, and rising expenses. Lutfi emphasized the need for companies to shift their focus from solely competing on price to a more comprehensive approach that encompasses underwriting, risk selection, claims management, and operational efficiency. By doing so, insurers can improve their overall performance and ensure long-term sustainability and profitability in the insurance industry.
Another keynote address at the event, titled“UAE Insurance Ecosystem - Ready for the big leap,” was delivered by Simon Price, chief executive officer of DIFC Insurance Association. In his address, Price expressed optimism regarding the UAE insurance market, emphasising that while insurance penetration rates have remained low for an extended period, the influx of people and businesses to the region is a positive sign. He highlighted the role of technology in meeting the increasing demand for insurance services, emphasising the five main business outcomes it can generate: increased revenue, improved customer experience, cost reduction through efficiency, compliance enablement, and risk management. Simon also underscored the importance of adapting to change, leveraging available technology, and prioritising customer expectations. He concluded by emphasising the significance of organisational support and executive involvement in driving successful transformation. Delegates at a panel discussion. - Supplied photo
The event featured an exceptional lineup of esteemed speakers, including prominent figures from the insurance industry like Aftab Hassan, chairman - Risk Exchange DIFC; Komal Shivdasani, vice-president, head of international, logistics & insurance management - First Abu Dhabi Bank; David Youssef, managing director - VUMI Global; Venkateswaran Narayanan, Partner - Uniqus Consultech; Neeraj Gupta, chief executive officer - Policybazaar.ae; Carole Khalife, general manager strategy & innovation - Al Futtaim Willis; Varghese Skariah, group head of data - National Life & General Insurance Company; Simon Isgar, partner and head of insurance/reinsurance – BSABH; Serena Mujtaba, group business planning - National Life & General Insurance Company; Rakesh Sudhakaran, senior vice president, bancassurance - Sukoon Insurance; Walter Jopp, chief executive officer - SALAMA – Islamic Arab Insurance Co; Stefano Nalin, executive vice president – Business Development - Abu Dhabi National Insurance Company (ADNIC); Anurag Chaturvedi, chief executive officer - Andersen UAE and Gaurav Baid, senior partner - AJMS Global.
The introduction of IFRS 17, a groundbreaking accounting standard for the insurance industry, was also explained in one of the sessions to enhance transparency and consistency. However, its implementation poses potential challenges, time constraints, and expenses. Fortunately, Baid presented a comprehensive blueprint for an end-to-end IFRS 17 program, ensuring a streamlined and efficient adoption process. Key changes, such as the level of aggregation, reserves on a best estimate basis, and risk adjustment estimation, were highlighted. Notably, IFRS 17 recognises insurance contract profit over the contract's lifespan, offering a more stable and predictable earnings stream. Although initial volatility may arise, particularly due to interest rate fluctuations, careful planning and adherence to assumptions will pave the way for success.
“The Future of Insurance 2023 event was an incredible platform for industry leaders to come together and delve into the challenges and opportunities reshaping the insurance landscape,” said Nilesh Devadia, director business development, Khaleej Times.“We are grateful for the participation of our esteemed speakers and attendees who contributed to the event's success, fostering insightful discussions and igniting a spirit of collaboration. We are especially grateful to our supporting associations Insurance Business Group, Emirates Insurance Association and DIFC Insurance Association. We would also like to extend our heartfelt appreciation to our event sponsors. Their support and collaboration have made this summit possible. We are grateful to our gold sponsor Policybazaar.ae, silver sponsor BSAbh, strategic sponsor Uniqus, networking sponsor Millionaire Aisle, and knowledge partner Taxation Society.”
The event provided attendees with unparalleled networking opportunities, cutting-edge insights, and actionable strategies to navigate the evolving insurance landscape. The vibrant atmosphere was a testament to the industry's commitment to driving innovation, fostering collaboration, and embracing the future of insurance.