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St Maarten joins Catastrophe Risk Insurance Facility

by: Caribbean 360 News - September 6, 2018
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ST. MAARTEN WAS SEVERELY IMPACTED BY HURRICANE IRMA IN SEPTEMBER 2017 WITH DAMAGES IN THE COUNTRY ESTIMATED BY THE GOVERNMENT AND CONTAINED IN ITS DISASTER RECOVERY PLAN TO BE IN EXCESS OF US$1.8 BILLION.

GRAND CAYMAN, Cayman Islands, Wednesday September 5, 2018 – St. Maarten has joined CCRIF SPC (formerly the Caribbean Catastrophe Risk Insurance Facility), purchasing coverage for tropical cyclones, earthquakes and excess rainfall.

The Dutch Caribbean island joined the Facility on September 1 as a late entrant this policy year which began on June 1, 2018. CCRIF’s membership now stands at 20 countries – 19 Caribbean governments and one Central American government – as in this policy year both the British Virgin Islands and Montserrat also joined the Facility.

“We are pleased to welcome St. Maarten as a new member to CCRIF and look forward to working with the Government of St. Maarten to strengthen its disaster risk management framework in the face of increasing climate-related risks,” said CCRIF CEO, Isaac Anthony.

CCRIF provides parametric insurance coverage, the selection of which is largely driven by the fact that parametric insurance is generally less expensive than an equivalent traditional indemnity insurance product as it does not require a loss assessment procedure in case of a disaster. This is an important feature considering the urgent need for liquidity by a government after a catastrophe.

St. Maarten, like 12 other Caribbean countries, was severely impacted by Hurricane Irma in September 2017 with damages in the country estimated by the Government and contained in its disaster recovery plan to be in excess of US$1.8 billion. Following Tropical Cyclones Irma and Maria in 2017, CCRIF made payouts totalling US$55 million to 9 member governments.

Since CCRIF’s inception in 2007, it has made 36 payouts totalling US$130.5 million to 13 member governments, all within 14 days of the event – one of the Facility’s core principles.