Guernsey is hosting a seminar in London next month to showcase the potential benefits it can offer as a captive insurance domicile that is not seeking equivalence under Solvency II.

Guernsey is the largest captive insurance domicile in Europe but it is not part of the European Union and therefore the Island’s authorities had to decide whether to seek equivalence under the EU’s proposed insurance and reinsurance regulatory regime, Solvency II.

The Guernsey Government and regulator issued a statement in January confirming that the Island has no plans currently to seek equivalence under Solvency II but will continue to follow the standards of the International Association of Insurance Supervisors (IAIS). Now the Island is hosting an event to explore the rationale behind the decision and its implications, including the potential benefits it can offer as a captive insurance domicile.

Peter Niven, Chief Executive of Guernsey Finance – the promotional agency for the Island’s finance industry, said: “The decision not to seek equivalence under Solvency II is based on the fact that under the current proposals, we would need to adopt measures that might undermine the competitive nature of our captive insurance industry.

“This event aims to provide clients and their advisers with more information about why we have chosen this route and what it means for them. I believe that this is an extremely good opportunity for us to explore the key issues and in particular the potential benefits that Guernsey will be able to offer as a captive insurance domicile outside the scope of the Solvency II regime.”

The Solvency II seminar takes place from 4pm on Tuesday 14th June 2011 at the London Stock Exchange where panellists will be Salil Bhalla, Vice-President and Portfolio Manager at Chartis; Nick Wild, Managing Director of JLT Insurance Management in Guernsey; Jonathan Groves, Captive Consulting Leader at Marsh; and Ian Morris, Partner and Head of Insurance at BWCI in Guernsey.

Martin Le Pelley, Chairman of the Guernsey International Insurance Association (GIIA) and who will moderate the panel discussion, said: “It promises to be extremely informative debate. Each of the panellists will be able to offer a different perspective but what they all share is enormous experience and expertise in the insurance market so I expect some interesting discussions that clients and their advisers will find very useful. However, I am also looking forward to some interaction between the panellists and the delegates, which could help provoke greater insight into the issues surrounding Solvency II.”  

Mr Niven added: “The decision not to seek equivalence with Solvency II was a significant development for our insurance sector. It was not taken lightly and indeed we will continue to monitor how the process unfolds during the coming months to make sure that our captive insurance industry is best placed for the future. This event is very much part of our two-way communication with key decision makers in the captive insurance community.”

The Guernsey Solvency II seminar is titled ‘Non-equivalence – a route to opportunity?’ and is free to attend. The event starts from 4pm on Tuesday 14th June 2011 at the London Stock Exchange, 10 Paternoster Square, London EC4M 7LS. For further information or to book a delegate place please contact Jennifer Baudains by email or telephone +44 (0) 1481 720071.

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Notes to Editors:

What is Solvency II?
The EU’s proposed regulatory regime for insurance and reinsurance business which it is anticipated will come into effect from the beginning of 2013.

Guernsey’s captive insurance industry
Guernsey is the leading captive insurance domicile in Europe and the fourth largest in the world, with 676 international insurance entities, comprising 347 international insurers – made up of traditional captives, Protected Cell Companies (PCCs), Incorporated Cell Companies (ICCs) and ICC cells – and 329 PCC cells.