Insurance - - INDUSTRY UPDATES -

Source: The Brunei Times, 15 Novem­ber 2013 A new insurance as­so­ci­a­tion that will unite taka­ful com­pa­nies with con­ven­tional in­sur­ers was set up with the launch­ing of the Brunei Insurance and Taka­ful As­so­ci­a­tion (BITA). The as­so­ci­a­tion will re­place the Gen­eral Insurance As­so­ci­a­tion Brunei Darus­salam (GIAB), which will be dis­solved upon the full op­er­a­tions and elec­tion of a man­age­ment com­mit­tee, said He­len Yeo, cur­rent chair­man of GIAB and pro-tem­pore chair­man of BITA.

The GIAB only con­sists of con­ven­tional insurance com­pa­nies. Yeo told the Ox­ford Busi­ness Group ear­lier that BITA would ad­dress con­cerns in the in­dus­try, which had been pre­vi­ously crit­i­cised for “dis­par­ity” be­tween the two types of insurance providers. She told OBG in The Re­port: Brunei Darus­salam 2011 that the two streams have pre­vi­ously op­er­ated on their own, in­de­pen­dent of each other and di­a­logue has been lim­ited. This has led to a po­lar­ity in the in­dus­try that has not been of ben­e­fit to any­one. As things stand, the only me­di­at­ing au­thor­ity is the reg­u­la­tor. Backed by the Insurance Or­der 2006 and Taka­ful Or­der 2008, the Au­toriti Mone­tari Brunei Darus­salam (AMBD) over­sees insurance and taka­ful in the sul­tanate. It is­sued a “Gen­eral Agency Hand­book” to reg­u­late the reg­is­tra­tion and con­duct of gen­eral insurance agents. AMBD has now re­quested for more fre­quent, monthly re­ports, whereas pre­vi­ously, in­sur­ers were re­quired to sub­mit quar­terly re­ports and their bal­ance sheets once a year, the re­port read. Ac­cord­ing to Yeo, mem­bers to the BITA will have to sign an “In­ter­Com­pany Agree­ment,” which stip­u­lates that they agree to the terms of the AMBD-is­sued hand­book. The soft launch­ing of BITA car­ried the theme “Pro­tec­tion is ev­ery­one’s re­spon­si­bil­ity” and high­lighted the im­por­tance of fi­nan­cial plan­ning and even­tu­ally the need to have insurance or taka­ful. Se­nior gov­ern­ment of­fi­cers and taka­ful and insurance com­pa­nies’ staff and per­son­nel at­tended the event.

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