The EU’s Solvency II Directive will enter into force on 1 January 2016. This will update the approach taken to determine the capital required by insurers against their risk profile. It will also introduce a common European approach to prudential regulation based on economic principles for measurement of assets and liabilities.
The Capital Market Authority of Oman (CMA) has issued new regulations which require Omani insurers to be listed on the Muscat Securities Market and maintain capital of OMR 10 million.
The State Council in Oman also recently approved the draft Takaful Insurance Law. The law sets out the regulatory code for takaful operators, including oversight and reporting requirements, product standards and liquidity levels. The draft law also sets out that only dedicated takaful firms may operate, preventing existing conventional companies to setup takaful windows.
The Insurance Authority, UAE has introduced financial regulations for insurance and takaful companies. This includes regulations on reserving, investment limits and solvency etc. Companies are also required to fill new prudential forms as part of enhanced reporting requirements. The actual implementation of the regulations are staggered over a number of years but companies are encouraged by the regulator to implement procedures even before the requirements becomes mandatory.
Dubai has introduced a mandatory health insurance scheme for private employees. The law makes it compulsory for employers and sponsors to provide health insurance in three phases from 2014-2016, according to the number of employees. The cost of health insurance coverage must be borne by the employer / sponsor. The minimum basic health coverage has been fixed at AED 150,000 per year with an annual premium between AED 500-700.
The Qatar Financial Centre Regulatory Authority (QFCRA) has introduced Own Risk Self-Assessment (ORSA) as mandatory part of reporting for insurance companies. ORSA is a detailed forward-looking examination of the adequacy of an insurer’s risk management policies, procedures and controls and the insurer’s current and future solvency position. ORSA requirements is in line with the global regulatory frameworks like Solvency II.
The Central Bank of Bahrain (CBB) has made production of Financial Condition Reports mandatory for all insurance and takaful companies. In addition, the actuary of a takaful firm should certify wakala fees, participant’s fund underwriting loss, distribution of surplus and earmarking of assets. The new regulations which were first made mandatory for the 2014 enhances the role of actuaries in the financial evaluation of the company.