Govt ‘fail­ing body corps’

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - NEWS - An­gelique Pat­ter­son

A NA­TIONAL In­surance Ad­vi­sory Coun­cil is not the an­swer to the fail­ing strata in­surance mar­ket in Far North Queens­land, ac­cord­ing to Archers Body Cor­po­rate Man­age­ment .

Fol­low­ing an in­quiry into the strata mar­ket, the Fed­eral Government an­nounced an ad­vi­sory coun­cil which has so far largely ig­nored the rec­om­men­da­tions put for­ward.

Archers man­ag­ing di­rec­tor Colin Archer said an RP Data search re­vealed over 55 per cent of units sold in the De­cem­ber quar­ter in North Queens­land were be­low their ac­quired cost, mak­ing it Aus­tralia’s worst per­form­ing prop­erty seg­ment.

‘‘There are two com­pa­nies of­fer­ing poli­cies for new in­surance, one is Lon­gi­tude, a Sun­corp sub­sidiary that in­sures up to $15 mil­lion leav­ing Strata Unit Un­der­writ­ers the only com­pany good enough to stay in the mar­ket for larger build­ings,’’ he said.

‘‘If they pull out there’s no one to in­sure the build­ings and they keep say­ing they are run­ning out of ca­pac­ity.

‘‘This is clear ev­i­dence there’s a mar­ket fail­ure prob­lem and this is where gov­ern­ments are meant to help.’’

Mr Archer said be­cause North Queens­land is paying at least 10 times more than the south­ern ar­eas on body cor­po­rate in­surance, it means they are also paying 10 per cent more taxes on the state’s stamp duty and fed­eral GST than peo­ple liv­ing in Bris­bane.

‘‘I don’t see why the Government can’t put a stop on that and make it fairer but that was two rec­om­men­da­tions in the report not given the time of day,’’ he said.

‘‘ An­other rec­om­men­da­tion was to de­mand the 20 com­pa­nies who of­fer strata in­surance in Aus­tralia to of­fer their prod­ucts across Aus­tralia, but the in­surance coun­cil is op­posed to that be­cause it’s not free trade.

‘‘The big­gest rec­om­men­da­tion was to in­ves­ti­gate the ex­pan­sion of the Aus­tralian Rein­sur­ance Pool Corp.,

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