Thirty-one insurance associations representing 87 percent of global insurance business have together formed the Global Federation of Insurance Associations (GFIA). Members include the Association of British Insurers (ABI), the American Insurance Association (AIA), the German Insurance Association (GDV) and the Korea Life Insurance Association (KLIA).
The GFIA will be active in a broad range of issues affecting the global insurance industry. These include, “developments in the systemic risk debate, market conduct, trade issues the development of ComFrame (the common framework for supervising international groups) and initiatives in relation to financial inclusion and anti-money laundering.”
Frank Swedlove, the newly-elected chair of GFIA and president of the Canadian Life and Health Insurance Association, declared it, “A great day for the insurance industry around the world.” He added, “The federation will give our associations the ability to respond on a timely basis to international issues affecting our industry and to speak with one voice.”
Vice-chair of the new federation will be Recaredo Arias, secretary general of FIDES (Federación Interamericana de Empresas de Seguros). The founding member associations also elected a secretary, Michaela Koller, director general of Insurance Europe. The announcement explained, “As the secretariat, Insurance Europe will undertake the significant work that will be required to support the GFIA’s initiatives in key areas of concern to the global insurance industry.”
The world’s insurance associations have cooperated informally for several years, most recently as the International Network of Insurance Associations. With the formation of GFIA this is the first time a formal federation of global insurance associations has been created.
Chairing the inaugural meeting of GFIA, Governor Dirk Kempthorne, president and CEO of the American Council of Life Insurers said, “Regulation of the insurance industry is increasingly being set internationally. The establishment of the Global Federation of Insurance Associations will allow the industry to work more closely with international regulators in the development of sound and balanced regulation.”