Insurers study Cuba’s $448 million market
March 14, 2016
There’s little talk about rushing right in, but insurers are scouting
opportunities in Florida’s neighbor and thawing Cold War adversary, Cuba.
A report released Monday cites research showing Cuba’s insurance market
at $448 million in annual premiums as recently as 2013, with about 80
percent of that property and casualty insurance. Most of the rest is
life insurance, with health insurance accounting for a fairly small slice.
“Watch this space for things to come,” said Lynne McChristian, Florida
representative for the industry-funded Insurance Information Institute.
With institute president Robert Hartwig, she is one of the authors of a
report on prospects for insurers in Cuba.
“The possibility of developing trade ties with a nation in such close
proximity to the United States—a mere 90 miles from Key West,
Florida—has captured the attention and imagination of U.S. businesses,”
the report said. “And, as they begin to explore the prospect of a future
that allows foreign capital to flow into the country, the Caribbean’s
largest island, insurers will be among them.”
There are all sorts of hurdles to overcome first, from trade and legal
barriers to currency issues, but eventually Cubans may seek greater
protection of property from hurricanes and drive more cars that are not
classic throwbacks from the 1950s.
“Opportunity may well exist for property/casualty insurers in Cuba but,
in the near term, are likely to be limited to travel-related products,
agriculture and the hotel industry,” the report said. “Easing of travel
restrictions will, of course, encourage more people to visit Cuba, and
the accompanying growth in sales of travel insurance will likely usher
in the first wave of new business.”
Source: Insurers study Cuba’s $448 million market | Protecting Your