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CCRIF sells excess-rainfall insurance to eight countries

Published:Thursday | August 28, 2014 | 12:00 AM

The Caribbean Catastrophe Risk Insurance Facility (CCRIF) recently announced that eight of its members have become the first countries to purchase its excess-rainfall insurance coverage for the 2014-2015 policy year.

Developed by CCRIF and global reinsurer, Swiss Re, the excess-rainfall product is aimed primarily at extreme high rainfall events of short duration (a few hours to a few days), whether they happen during a tropical cyclone (hurricane) or not. Like CCRIF's tropical cyclone and earthquake insurance, the excess-rainfall product is parametric and estimates the impacts of heavy rain using satellite rainfall data from the Tropical Rainfall Measurement Mission and exposure from CCRIF's risk-estimation database. Because the excess-rainfall product is parametric, a payout can be made quickly (within 14 days) after a rain event that triggers a country's policy, without waiting for time-consuming damage and loss assessments on the ground.

CCRIF CEO, Isaac Anthony, stated that, "The new excess-rainfall product has been eagerly awaited by Caribbean governments as we all realise that considerable damage in the region is caused by rainfall and flooding. This product complements CCRIF's hurricane coverage which determines losses based on wind and storm surge. We commend our eight members for taking the initiative and purchasing this groundbreaking product and hope that other countries in the region will follow."

In expressing Swiss Re's support, Martyn Parker, chairman, Global Partnerships, stressed, "Securing excess rainfall insurance protection demonstrates that Caribbean countries are taking a proactive approach to manage the contingent risks posed by climate change. Swiss Re is proud to support them in their efforts to ensure fiscal stability after a disaster."