Captive insurance enjoys spotlight at 2009 conference

The Cayman Islands captive insurance sector welcomed a large number of visitors to its booth during the Risk and Insurance Management Society 2009 annual conference and exhibition, despite reduced visitor numbers.

The three day event, held at the Orange County Convention Centre, Orlando, Florida, from 20-23 April, 2009, saw over 7,300 visitors ranging from risk and insurance management executives to brokers, insurers and service providers. With 120 educational sessions, keynote presentations, specialist events and an exhibit, visitors flocked to see more than 400 speakers discuss areas of claims management, employment risks, ERM, finance, industry, insurance, international, legal legislation, loss control and risk management.

The Cayman Islands financial services delegation comprised a group of 30 people; individual representatives from industry, government and the regulator working in partnership.

“Our contingent was a good demonstration of how our industry works with government, which, for example, meant that government supplied our booth, which was well placed near the main entrance and which managed to attract a large number of visitors,” said Ron Sulisz, chairman of the Insurance Managers Association of Cayman.

“This is the largest such conference in North America, so it was important for us to attend considering the importance of the captive industry in Cayman,” he said.

He said that in fact this year has been Cayman’s best, with 90 new captives formed.

“Even in this economic climate, captives were up this quarter, possibly because the industry is conservative and boasts regulation which is business-friendly, which is one of our best selling features,” said Sulisz.

He said the team had the opportunity to discuss many issues concerning such topics as the regulatory environment and the G20 with existing clients and other registrants, saying that the atmosphere was generally positive and the Cayman team got a good reception.

He noted that it was also a great opportunity to assess what Cayman’s major competitors in the industry are up to.

Gordon Rowell, head of insurance for CIMA, said that despite the number of attendees being down by 30 per cent from last year, the team was encouraged by the traffic to the Cayman Islands booth.

“We have a first-rate financial services industry with an excellent business infrastructure and I am confident that it contributes towards the continued development of our reputation as a leading financial services centre,” said Rowell.

“Government has a distinct role in providing a secure legal framework, ensuring the regulatory regime is supportive and responsive to our leadership position,” he said.

“We believe that our private/public partnership is clearly defined and our philosophy helps ensure the continued stability, quality and integrity of our financial services sector. This is what keeps the Cayman Islands commercially attractive in an increasingly competitive environment.”

Additionally, the Cayman Islands Monetary Authority took the opportunity to meet on the booth with other regulatory heads from Bermuda, British Virgin Islands, Vermont, Hawaii and Utah to discuss matters of cross-border co-operation.