Vice President of the Insurance Corporation of Barbados Limited (ICBL) Henry Inniss also expects no negative impact from this week’s developments with the embattled CLICO International Life (CIL).
“The industry continues to progress. The industry had a bit of a set back with the CLICO issue [over five years ago] but people have gone beyond that. People have decided that it happened and it’s time to get ahead,” he told Barbados TODAY.
Given ICBL’s position in the market when it came to property and casualty, as well as life insurance, Inniss said it was not concerned that CIL’s current state of calamity would impact on the industry’s ability to sell insurance.
“I think time is a good healer and the fact that we are an A.M. Best rated company and apart from that we have a history of being a very stable and well-run company, a very solid company and those things work well for us,” he said.
In fact, he said he had not heard any negative reaction from policyholders to the announcement by CIL’s judicial manager, Deloitte Consulting, that the company was headed into liquidation. Since then, Government has reiterated its commitment to a restructuring plan for the cash-strapped company, whose collapse in 2009 has left scores of policyholders and investors out of pocket.
“I gather [that] the Government has now reiterated that they will pursue the path they had announced previously. A company apparently has been set up to manage the affairs of CLICO. So given that I don’t expect any negative fallout for the rest of the industry,” the ICBL official said.
“You have plane crashes all the time but people still have to travel. So I am saying that you have things that are calamitous and you have things that are problematic but you have to get over them, and people move on. So at this time we have gone past the negatives from CLICO in the industry and it is not a problem,” he asserted.
He said “overall the life division” of ICBL had grown this year, when compared to last year and he was expecting between 15 and 20 per cent increases by the end of this year.
“Life insurance is really about understanding people’s needs and providing a product that is really [needed]. There is really no other product like life insurance . . . and it is one that is going to be needed regardless of the state of the economy. So we are having a good time,” reported Inniss.