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EIOPA : meeting on the EU-US insurance dialogue

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The European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority (EIOPA) hosted on 11 July a Steering Committee Meeting of the EU-US dialogue insurance project. The 4th Steering Committee Meeting was hosted by Gabriel Bernardino, Chairman of EIOPA.

The EU and the US have recently started a dialogue to increase mutual understanding and cooperation with a view to identifying the main commonalities and differences of the two insurance regulatory and supervisory regimes. This dialogue will allow regulators at both sides of the Atlantic to find areas where further compatibility and convergence will be possible and could pave the way for future decisions.

Gabriel Bernardino, Chairman of EIOPA, said: “Financial systems in the EU and the US still have significant differences and some of these are dictated by cultural differences and legitimate political options. However, we believe it is the responsibility of public authorities to create conditions to foster consumer protection, facilitate business relationships and enhance the efficiency of supervision. We are certainly committed to these objectives”.

Michael McRaith, Director of the US Federal Insurance Office, underlined: “The insurance dialogue between the EU and US is critical to the promotion of transatlantic understanding and cooperation, and to the promotion of greater consistency and alignment in insurance regulation. We look forward to continuing our work with our EU counterparts and US state regulators for the benefit of insurance consumer protection and business opportunity in both jurisdictions.”

In addition to Gabriel Bernardino, Chairman of EIOPA, and Michael McRaith, Director of FIO, the meeting was attended by Edward Forshaw, Manager in the Prudential Policy division, UK Financial Services Authority, Charlotte Paterson,[1]

Internal Market and Services Directorate General of the European Commission, Susan Voss, Iowa Commissioner and Immediate Past President of the US National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), and Terri Vaughan, NAIC Executive Director.

The meeting focused on the progress in the analysis of the EU and US regulatory and supervisory systems. This analysis is related to seven key areas: professional secrecy; group supervision; solvency & capital requirements; reinsurance and collateral requirements; supervisory reporting, data collection & analysis and transparency to the market; supervisory peer reviews; independent third party review and supervisory on-site exams/inspections.

The next Steering Committee meeting is scheduled for October 2012 and will take place in Washington (USA).