Qatar Insurance Company (QIC) Group has reported an 18% year-on-year growth in gross written premium (GWP) to QR11.7bn in 2017.
As a globally diversified insurance group, QIC successfully weathered severe headwinds from record global natural catastrophe losses and unexpected political challenges in the region, it said.
Year 2017 has been challenging for the global insurance industry due to the exceptional natural catastrophe events impacting the US, namely Harvey, Irma and Maria windstorms. The impact has been exaggerated due to the sequential nature of the windstorms that caused a total industry loss of up to $100bn.
Other major event that adversely impacted insurers operating in the UK insurance market, where QIC Group had exposure through its international operations, was the sharp and unexpected reduction of the Ogden discount rate in the UK in the first quarter in 2017, which forced the insurers to increase their loss reserves. The industry-wide impact of Ogden is estimated to be $10bn in lost reserves.
Highlighting that these unprecedented losses are well within QIC’s risk appetite and tolerance limits, it said the combined impact was only an earnings event and did not affect the group’s solvency from a regulatory, ratings or internal capital adequacy point of view.
Against this adverse backdrop, QIC Group generated a net underwriting result of QR115mn in 2017, down 86% compared with the previous year.
QIC Group continued to expand across its global and regional target markets, lines of business and client segments, recording QR11.7bn GWP, mainly due to key growth engines as Qatar Re, Antares and QIC Europe, which now account for approximately 75% of the group’s total GWP.
Domestically, Q Life and Medical Insurance Company added buoyancy to the group’s overall performance. QIC Group’s consolidated net profit stood at QR418mn compared to QR1.03bn a year ago.
Despite political and other unrelated economic turbulences in the Middle East, QIC Group’s investment income and other income amounted to QR986mn in 2017 against QR925mn in the previous year.
“In the face of almost unprecedented market adversity, QIC has proven its resilience and maintained its leading position across the Middle East and North Africa region. At the same time, we have continued to expand our global footprint, positioning us well for any market hardening going forward,” according to Khalifa Abdulla Turki al-Subaey, QIC Group president and chief executive.
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