DIFC records $2.6bn in gross written premiums, highest figure in its 20-year history 

RIYADH: Dubai International Financial Centre recorded its highest gross written premiums in its 20-year history, amounting to $2.6 billion in 2023, marking a 23 percent increase from the previous year. 

DIFC, a global financial center in the Middle East, Africa, and South Asia region, connects the fast-growing markets of the region with global economies and offers dining, retail, and living amenities, according to its website. 

The center also recorded a 20 percent increase in the registration of insurance and reinsurance firms, including the first move of a Guernsey-based captive. 

The Emirates News Agency reported that DIFC “has consolidated its position as the principal hub for the (re)insurance industry,” adding  that DIFC’s appeal for managing general agents, representing 43 percent of new registrations, is a major factor shaping its insurance landscape.

This is credited to the center’s well-established regulatory framework, facilitating partnerships with cedants and brokers. 

The influx of global insurers, reinsurers, and brokers, as well as captives, MGAs, and other industry stakeholders into DIFC, is driven by several factors. These include buoyant oil prices and increased infrastructure spending, as well as a focus on sustainable projects and low insurance penetration in the region. 

Among the notable entities to join DIFC’s insurance sector in the past year are Alif Limited, Arc Insurance and Reinsurance Limited, and Barents Risk Management Limited. Joining them are BharatRe Global Ltd. and many more, it added. 

Arif Amiri, CEO of DIFC Authority, emphasized the center’s role as a global industry hub, hosting over 120 registered insurers, reinsurers, captives, MGAs, and related entities. 

The significance of DIFC’s stature in the insurance domain is further underscored by its co-hosting of the Dubai World Insurance Congress, featuring discussions on key themes reshaping the industry’s future, including innovation, capital attraction, and talent development. 

In 2023, a survey conducted at DWIC revealed an 87 percent confidence in the Middle East, Africa, and Southern Asia market’s strategic opportunities. Property, health, energy, cyber, and liability lines of business were identified as holding the most potential. The survey also highlighted an 85 percent confidence rate in renewals and client retention. 

Over two decades, DIFC has fostered the growth of the insurance and reinsurance industry, attracting talent and expertise to access key markets in the Middle East, Asia, and Africa.  

The center hosts major insurance brokers, five of which are top ranked by the specialized insurance credit rating agency, AM Best. This has contributed to a significant 61 percent increase in brokered premiums compared to 2022, surpassing the $2 billion mark and solidifying DIFC’s position as a global market for insurance and reinsurance placements. 

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