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Bermuda approaches Solvency II equivalency


HAMILTON, Bermuda—The Bermuda Monetary Authority said it is “pleased” that the European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority’s preliminary assessment of Bermuda’s regulatory framework in relation to Solvency II indicated that the island’s regulatory system for commercial insurers generally meets the criteria for Solvency II equivalence.

Bermuda is among the first wave of non-European Union countries, along with Japan and Switzerland, being considered for third-country equivalence status, meaning its regulations have been accepted as being equivalent to the upcoming Solvency II risk-based capital regulatory system being drafted in Europe.

In a statement issued Wednesday, the BMA said, “In particular, we note the alignment of our regime with Solvency II principles in key areas such as the scope of group supervision and the solvency regime for groups.”

Not completely compliant

But the EIOPA’s draft report, which also was issued Wednesday, said Bermuda was not completely in compliance in several areas, including governance and public disclosure.

The BMA said in its statement that it “expected, and have under active consideration, EIOPA’s suggestions or caveats on areas for additional regime enhancements. Since this assessment is the first phase of a process that will conclude in 2012 with the E.U.

Commission’s final decision on equivalence, in the interim period we can conclude work on these areas and the various work streams already in progress.”

EIOPA draft reports issued Wednesday also found that neither Japan nor Switzerland had achieved complete equivalence status.

For in-depth coverage of this topic and related issues, visit our Solution Arc on Solvency II Compliance and Business Challenges for Insurers.