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Cayman showcases its reinsurance industry

While the Cayman Islands has built itself an enviable reputation as being the leading offshore jurisdiction for the hedge fund and trust industries, its reinsurance industry has perhaps been perceived as somewhat in its infancy, until now. For the first time, a recent conference held at The Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman brought together industry leaders, stakeholders, regulators and all-round key players in a bid to show the world how ready and able the jurisdiction is in becoming a leading light for this niche of the financial services industry as well.

The conference, entitled [Re]Connect, took place on 18th and 19th April, 2024, and was organised by the Cayman International Reinsurance Companies Association (CIRCA), a body that is growing in number and is currently made up of more than 50 full and associate members, with a mission to promote collaboration, advocate for regulatory excellence, and drive educational initiatives in this sector of Cayman’s reinsurance industry. The conference afforded event-goers the chance to forge important relationships with their peers within the industry by creating networking opportunities, as well as offering a vital exchange of knowledge and educational advancement.

Local and international speakers took turns in educating and informing the audience on key issues affecting the industry and, underscoring the high importance the Cayman Islands Government has placed on developing the industry, the Hon André M Ebanks MP, Deputy Premier and Minister for Financial Services and Commerce, gave a keynote speech.

Of particular interest, a series of panel discussions among industry experts focused on providing insights and uncovering strategic opportunities for reinsurance in the Cayman Islands, especially within the life & annuity and property & casualty segments. Some important asset managers, including Paul Forestall, Managing Partner with Brookfield Reinsurance and Raj Krishnan, Partner and CIO with Ares Insurance Solutions, gave the audience an insight into their thoughts on aspects of the reinsurance industry that are drawing interest to the Cayman Islands, in particular. Giving an important perspective as far as the regulator is concerned, Kara Ebanks, Head of the Cayman Islands Monetary Authority’s Insurance Supervision Division, spoke on a panel on Emerging Regulatory Topics, speaking on subjects including CIMA’s efforts to keep Cayman at the forefront of international standards. The conference delegates also heard about the ever-growing field of insurtech, whereby they discovered how innovations and technological advancements were transforming risk transfer processes.

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The audience also got to understand why the Cayman Islands, as a destination, was of growing interest for reinsurance companies as an outstanding location for the reinsurance industry. They heard Cayman possessed a multi-faceted, business-friendly approach, a straightforward attitude to licencing and application and learnt how insurance managers helped set up a reinsurance operation.

Another important aspect of the conference was to inform event-goers a little about the incredible lifestyle that awaits anyone looking to relocate to this particularly amenable corner of the globe. Set at the immaculate and luxurious Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman, the conference had already set the tone for advertising this remarkable sophisticated Caribbean location just over an hour’s flight from the Unites States. Crucially, they were given a good insight into how to set up a business and the recruitment process needed to staff their business.

Representatives from CIRCA believed that with strong support from the local business community and government, the [Re]Connect conference was poised to become a landmark event for the Cayman Islands and a cornerstone of the international reinsurance conference circuit.

Steve Papciak, CIRCA Marketing Committee Chair, said the overwhelmingly positive response they had received towards [Re]Connect highlighted the potential for the future of this event and the industry, as a whole.

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