Green Paper on Natural Disasters

Natural hazard insurance: EU Commission missed opportunity

Damage resulting from natural hazards represents a latent threat and a high financial risk to the population. Consequently, many European Member States already have extensive and functioning insurance systems against natural hazards in place. However, the Green Paper on “the insurance of natural and man-made disasters” fails to present a neutral appraisal of these measures.

German insurers offer comprehensive risk transfer for natural hazards, promote science and climate research, and for over 100 years have been intensely engaged in the area of damage prevention. The German market is not standing alone. Unfortunately, the Green Paper does not make reference to this commitment. Instead it generates the impression that there are no genuinely functioning insurance solutions for natural hazards and man-made disasters in Europe. Here a neutral overview of the status quo is missing.

Furthermore, the Green Paper has missed an important opportunity: It fails to engage with the core question as to why private households are often unwilling to insure themselves against natural hazard events, relying instead on government support measures a.o.. This behaviour can be changed – even without compulsory insurance. This is illustrated by the German natural hazards campaigns. The joint campaigns run by federal states, consumer protection associations and insurance industry have resulted in a remarkable increase in natural hazard insurance penetration.

The GDV’s complete position paper is available in the download section.


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Position paper

on the consultation on the Green Paper on the Insurance of Natural and Man - Made Disasters