Insurance and Reinsurance Firms Prudentially Supervised by the Central Bank

Introduction

Since the inception of the COVID-19 pandemic, the focus of the Central Bank has been to ensure that the (re)insurance sector continues to operate in a way that sustainably and effectively serves the needs of its policyholders and the real economy throughout this period.

Supervisory Flexibility Regarding the Deadline for Supervisory Reporting and Public Disclosure

Acknowledging the immediate challenge posed by reporting and disclosure deadlines, the Central Bank wrote to all (re)insurance firms and Special Purpose Reinsurance Vehicles on 24 March 2020, applying a degree of supervisory flexibility in relation to certain reporting and disclosure deadlines. The communication was issued following a series of recommendations made by the European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority (“EIOPA”) on 20 March 2020. A link to the Central Bank letters and EIOPA recommendations is set out below:

Supervisory Flexibility Regarding Reporting Deadlines - COVID-19 - SPRVs | pdf 457 KB Supervisory Flexibility Regarding Reporting Deadlines - COVID-19 | pdf 592 KB

EIOPA recommendations on supervisory flexibility regarding the deadline of supervisory reporting and public disclosure - Coronavirus/COVID-19

Reliable supervisory reporting is crucial in times when the financial system faces many challenges caused by the COVID-19 outbreak. To examine the effects of COVID-19 on the financial sector, the Central Bank will require additional targeted information to be submitted by (re)insurance firms during this period. While we aim to be measured and pragmatic with these data requests in terms of the type and frequency of requests, recognising the rapidly evolving nature of the situation we are faced with, we expect (re)insurance firms to continue to engage constructively with us and respond to such requests in an expedient manner. The flexibility measures set out in the Central Bank letters will be kept under review and updated as necessary.

Insurance and Reinsurance Firms - Central Bank Expectations in Light of COVID-19 - Version available on Website from 20 April 2020 to 5 November 2020 | pdf 400 KB

Risk Mitigation Programme (RMP) Submission Dates

In March 2020, the Central Bank applied a level of supervisory flexibility in relation to the deadlines for remedial actions/measures to ensure regulated entities could take the actions and steps needed to cope with significantly changed operational demands, to remain resilient, and to continue to serve their customers and the economy.

Individual firms could engage directly with their supervisor where they had difficulties in relation to meeting specific risk mitigation programme (RMP) submission dates. Supervisors assessed the circumstances and determined on a case-by-case basis whether a postponement of such measures would be necessary in order to achieve the objectives stated above.

The Central Bank considers that firms should have now adapted to the current operating environment, and as such, expects firms to meet specific RMP submission dates.  Should firms identify concerns in meeting these timelines they should engage in a timely manner with their usual supervisors.

EIOPA Statements and Recommendations

Over the past number of months, EIOPA has issued a number of statements and recommendations in relation to COVID-19 and measures to be taken to mitigate the impact. These statements and recommendations can be found on the EIOPA's website. The Central Bank is supportive of the measures set out in these statements and recommendations.

Further updates

The Central Bank will continue to review its approach to regulatory flexibility for the (re)insurance sector throughout the duration of the COVID-19 pandemic and may provide further updates as required.

See also: