UNDP launches Insurance & Risk Finance Facility, ILS support anticipated

The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) has today launched the Insurance and Risk Finance Facility (IRFF), a new initiative that aims to build financial resilience and bridge a $1.4 trillion global health, mortality, and disaster protection gap, with support from the insurance-linked securities (ILS) market expected in future.

Importantly, this Insurance and Risk Finance Facility (IRFF) will work to channel risk to private insurance, reinsurance and capital markets over-time, and aims to significantly increase the role of insurance and risk-financing in development.

The German Government has contributed €35 million in funding to the Facility, which will be used for technical work and capacity building on the ground, as well as for the development of new insurance products.

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Weather disasters drive US $ 3.64 trillion in losses in 50 years: WMO data

The high costs of weather disasters around the globe is truly laid bare by the latest data from the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), which estimates that weather, climate and water related disasters drove some US$ 3.64 trillion in losses over the last 50 years.

The WMO’s latest Atlas of Mortality and Economic Losses from Weather, Climate and Water Extremes covers the period from 1970 to 2019, during which over 2 million lives were lost to these disasters.

That is from more than 11,000 reported disasters recorded, and during the period the research found that weather, climate and water hazards accounted for 50% of all disasters, 45% of all reported deaths and 74% of all reported economic losses, while more than 91% of these deaths occurred in developing countries.

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Red Cross targets cat bonds for nature-based, humanitarian, resilience financing

The Red Cross, working alongside insurance-linked securities (ILS) risk securitisation facilitator and risk transfer consultancy Replexus Group, is developing a solution to promote nature-based solutions to disaster risk, financed partly through the use of catastrophe bonds, as well as other humanitarian and development scenarios.

Recently, the Danish Red Cross successfully delivered the world’s very first catastrophe bond covering pure volcanic eruption risk.

The organisations innovative finance team have been exploring other use-cases for catastrophe bonds and insurance-linked securities (ILS), around areas where it feels supporting capacity from the capital markets can both take on exposure to natural disasters, while helping its own funding work harder and do more.

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Cat bond not a “handout”, Jamaica aims to renew by itself: Minister

The fact foreign donors paid for the premiums associated with Jamaica’s first catastrophe bond does not mean it was a “handout” the country’s Minister of Finance has explained.

Jamaica’s first catastrophe bond, the recently placed IBRD CAR 130 transaction, was priced and saw the Caribbean island nation securing the upsized target of $185 million of coverage last week.

Helping Jamaica to access disaster insurance from the capital markets were the World Bank and its Treasury, which facilitated the transaction and worked on the deal for around three years.

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Jamaica’s cat bond priced at upsized $185m, ILS funds take 66% of notes

Jamaica’s first catastrophe bond, the IBRD CAR 130 transaction, has now been successfully priced and the Caribbean island nation has secured the upsized target of $185 million of coverage, with pricing closer to the upper-end of guidance.

Dedicated insurance-linked securities (ILS) investment funds took the lions share of the cat bond notes on offer, absorbing 66% of the arrangement, the World Bank reported.

As we reported recently here, the first catastrophe bond for Jamaica looked set to increase a little in size, from the original offering of $175 million of notes.

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Jamaica’s World Bank catastrophe bond could upsize to $185m

The first catastrophe bond for Jamaica, which as we were first to report ten days ago launched as a $175 million IBRD CAR 130 transaction with the support of the World Bank, is now said by our sources to have a chance of closing a little larger, at $185 million in size.

The $175 million or greater catastrophe bond seeks a capital markets backed source of named tropical storm and hurricane disaster insurance protection for the government of Jamaica, on a parametric trigger basis.

As we’d also reported recently, important grant agreements had been signed and as a result the first catastrophe bond for Jamaica was expected imminently.

That proved correct, when our sources told us the deal had been launched to investors ten days ago and we reported on the structure being offered and the protection it will afford to Jamaica’s government.

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Jamaica’s first cat bond launched at $175m by World Bank IBRD

The first catastrophe bond to benefit the Caribbean island nation of Jamaica has now been launched to investors, with the IBRD CAR 130 transaction, that is being issued via the World Bank, set to provide the Government with a $175 million or greater source of named tropical storm and hurricane disaster insurance protection.

We learned recently that important grant agreements had been signed and as a result the first catastrophe bond for Jamaica was imminent and could come to market as early as this week.

That has proved accurate and now the World Bank’s cat bond for Jamaica is in the market and details are with the insurance-linked securities (ILS) investment community, as well as other institutional investors we’d expect.

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UZBEKISTAN: UNDP helps develop the insurance sector in Uzbekistan

UNDP, together with the Agency for the Insurance Market Development at the Uzbek Ministry of Finance, organized a seminar on June 24, 2021, during which the results of the diagnostics of the development of inclusive insurance and risk financing in Uzbekistan were presented, UzDaily.uz reports.

It was noted that due to the vulnerability of Uzbekistan to natural disasters, which can bring devastating consequences for the economy and the population, as well as the insufficient development of the insurance market and the lack of tools for inclusive insurance and risk financing, the government, enterprises, and households of the country suffer financial losses amounting to millions of USD.

UNDP established a special Risk Insurance and Financing Fund (Mechanism) to provide technical assistance to countries participating in the climate risk insurance program, including Uzbekistan, to develop inclusive insurance, financing sovereign risks, and integrate insurance into development planning and financing processes. At the first stage, the task was set to diagnose the insurance industry in the country, and the results of this study, as well as the recommendations of experts on the development of this sector, were discussed during the seminar.

FULL PUBLICATION HERE

Kazakhstan: Almaty nonchalant over earthquake fears

As Kazakhstan awaits the Big One, its seismologists are underfunded while ever-taller buildings rise in the earthquake-prone commercial capital.

Nur-Sultan may be cold and windy, but at least earthquakes aren’t a concern.

That was Andrei Krasilnikov’s thought when he moved to the capital from Kazakhstan’s mountain-fringed business metropolis, Almaty.

“It was a shame to have to leave our hometown. We have beautiful mountains there, which we don’t have here,” Krasilnikov, an activist opposed to the rapid spread of high-rise construction, told Eurasianet. “But Almaty is in a seismic zone, and I want to live in peace and not have to worry about my family.”

By way of an example, Krasilnikov points to a recently unveiled project to build several dozen 17-story apartment blocks in a tightly packed residential area of Almaty.

“These kinds of ghettos will become a mass grave if there is a powerful earthquake, since rescue equipment will not even be able to drive up through the rubble,” the activist said.

The fears are not without basis. Almaty is in a seismically active region. Mild tremors are fairly common. And seismologists are predicting that a powerful tremor could occur within the coming decade.

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Jamaica catastrophe bond grant agreements signed, deal imminent

The project to issue a first catastrophe bond to benefit Jamaica has made further progress this month, with an important grant approval now received and the World Bank facilitated cat bond deal launch now imminent.

Of course, any regular Artemis readers will know that this World Bank project to issue a sovereign catastrophe bond for Jamaica has been underway for a number of years.

In fact, we first wrote about formalised work that had begun between the World Bank and the Jamaican government on a possible catastrophe bond issuance almost three years ago.

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