• ABIR member survey shows $834.3 million contribution to Bermuda

    Press Releases | 08.17.2016

    ABIR Press Release
    For Immediate Release
    Contact: Brad Kading | | @abir_bermuda

    ABIR member survey shows $834.3 million contribution to Bermuda

    Hamilton, Bermuda (August 17, 2016) – Members of the Association of Bermuda Insurers and Reinsurers (ABIR) directly contributed $834.3 million to the Bermuda economy in 2015, with aggregate spinoff benefits estimated to multiply the impact, according to ABIR’s 11th annual Bermuda Economic Impact Survey released today.

    Twenty-one Bermuda-based ABIR member companies participated in the survey, which tallied the total economic contribution of travel and entertainment expenses, payments for business services, charitable contributions, real-estate costs including housing reimbursement, and payroll.

    “Thanks to the dual success of both the Bermuda Monetary Authority winning regulatory recognition with our two main trading partners—the US and the EU—and the Government keeping pace with evolving international standards on tax transparency, reporting and cooperation, Bermuda is the best place from which a global commercial insurer and reinsurer can do business. We’re glad to be here and proud ABIR’s members can make such an enormous contribution to the Bermuda economy,” said Stephen Catlin, Executive Deputy Chair of XL Catlin and Chair of the ABIR Board of Directors.

    The ABIR survey also collected data on member companies’ business growth and regulatory domiciles overseas and charted employment growth in Bermuda—recording in 2015 a small increase in employees on the island, including a majority of whom were Bermudians, spouses of Bermudians and permanent residents.

    “There are headwinds towards further employment growth in Bermuda—such as insurers being under enormous expense stress due to declining profitability in core businesses and political risks on the island, in the US, and in the EU, but we are pleased ABIR members can report modest employment growth in 2015,” Catlin noted. “ABIR members employ more than 1,500 people in Bermuda and more than 67 percent are Bermudians, their spouses, or PRC holders. We’re proud of their contribution.”

    The main political risks facing ABIR members outside Bermuda were cited to be increasing regulatory restrictions on reinsurance market access by other jurisdictions’ protectionist policies, coupled with dramatic changes in global tax-reporting and disclosure requirements led by the OECD and the EU. In Bermuda, the main political risks were considered to be government fiscal challenges and potential civil unrest tied to local political battles over immigration policy and spending priorities.

    “Sometimes it’s easy for political leaders here on the island to forget the world is watching, but actions here do affect Bermuda’s global reputation and can influence its international business and tourism sectors—to the detriment of the local economy,” noted Bradley Kading, ABIR President and Executive Director.

    Key data from the 2015 survey included:

    • ABIR Travel and Entertainment Expenses in Bermuda—ABIR members estimated they spent over $26.3 million in Bermuda on hotels, airfare, restaurants, taxis and catering.
    • ABIR Business Services Expenses in Bermuda—ABIR members estimated they spent $64.4 million in Bermuda on legal, accounting, actuarial, temporary services and other consulting services.
    • ABIR Member Charitable Giving in Bermuda—ABIR members estimated they contributed nearly $8.2 million to Bermuda-based charities.
    • ABIR Member Construction, Real Estate and Housing Costs—ABIR members estimated they spent $96 million on construction, real estate, housing, and office costs in Bermuda.
    • ABIR Member Bermuda Employment—ABIR members reported employing 1,534 full-time employees in Bermuda (up 21 people from yearend 2014). Of these, 1,032 (or 67.3 percent) were Bermudian, spouses of Bermudians, or permanent residency certificate (PRC)-holders, up 25 from 2014.

    ABIR represents international re/insurance groups, all of which have essential underwriting operations in Bermuda. ABIR’s members are identified on our web site at Year-over-year survey comparisons are difficult due to changes in the make-up of the membership.

    ABIR represents the public-policy interests of Bermuda’s international insurers and reinsurers that protect consumers around the world. With headquarters and operations in Bermuda and with operating subsidiaries in the United States and Europe, these carriers do business in more than 150 countries. ABIR members employ nearly 44,500 people around the globe, including more than 19,000 employees in the US, over 1,500 in Bermuda, more than 9,800 in Europe, and nearly 8,200 in Asia and Oceana.