Oct 2019

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Source: Middle East Insurance Review | Jun 2019

Egypt: Chakib Abouzaid named as the new sec-gen of GAIF
The board of the General Arab Insurance Federation (GAIF) has named Mr Chakib Abouzaid as the new secretary general for the term 2020-2024. He takes over from Mr Abdul Khaliq R Khalil, who will be stepping down in June after having held the position for about 20 years.
Mr Abouzaid has three decades of experience in the insurance and reinsurance industry. He has held several senior positions, most recently as the group chief marketing officer at GroupMed Reinsurance Brokers, DIFC. 
Prior to that, he was CEO of Takaful Re for more than seven years, in addition to holding several other positions such as the vice chairman of the Global Takaful Group. Before joining Takaful Re, he served as regional general manager for Middle East & Gulf at BEST Re.
Mr Abouzaid believes that GAIF is capable of doing more to boost the region’s insurance industry and enhance cooperation between Arab companies. He expects the regional insurance industry to continue its growth trend propelled by the low penetration rate and young Arab population. His vision is to see an integrated Arab insurance industry and for GAIF to play a greater role in achieving this goal.

Qatar Re confirms acting CEO, promotes deputy CUO
Qatar Re has announced the confirmation of Mr Michael van der Straaten as the company’s CEO. Earlier this year, Mr Van der Straaten was appointed acting CEO of the company following the departure of Mr Gunther Saacke.
The reinsurer has also appointed Mr Pantelis Koulovasilopoulos as CUO – long tail & specialty classes. He formerly served as Qatar Re’s deputy CUO – long tail & specialty classes.
Mr Sunil Talwar, chairman of the board of directors of Qatar Re, said: “We are pleased to announce that Qatar Re has decided to appoint Michael van der Straaten as CEO. Mike has fitted seamlessly into the position, building on his achievements as our former chief underwriter for long tail and specialty classes. We are convinced that Mike will bring Qatar Re’s ongoing transition to a business model based on lower volatility and more reliable profitability to a successful conclusion.”
Mr Van der Straaten joined Qatar Re in late 2016. In 2017, he was appointed CUO - long tail & speciality classes and joined Qatar Re’s executive management committee. He started his career at Lloyd’s as a box manager and non-marine property treaty underwriter. He joined Qatar Re from ACE Tempest Re, where he held the role of deputy head of London and head of casualty, overseeing the development of their international casualty and motor business. Prior to this, he held various underwriting positions with a primary focus on casualty lines alongside wider management responsibilities.
Meanwhile, Mr Koulovasilopoulos joined Qatar Re in 2017 as deputy CUO – long tail & specialty classes. He has over 27 years of experience in insurance and reinsurance. He joined from Chubb Tempest Re International, where he was the chief actuary.

Jordan: JIF board re-elected for the 2019-2021 term
The Jordan Insurance Federation (JIF) has announced that the current members of the board have been re-elected to continue serving for the new term for 2019-2021. 
Mr Majed Smairat, GM of Middle East Insurance Co, will continue to serve as the chairman of JIF, while Mr Imad Hajjeh, GM of United Insurance Co, will serve as vice chairman. 
The other members include Dr Waleed Zurub, GM of Jordan French Insurance Co, Mr Rashid Habbab, GM of Arabia Insurance Co of Jordan, Dr Lana Badr, GM of Arab European Insurance Group, Mrs Manal Jarrar, GM of National Insurance Co and Mr Osamah Janineh, GM of Al-Manara Insurance Co.
Mr Smairat expressed his appreciation for being re-elected for a new term and promised to continue serving the sector to leverage the standards of the profession, finalise the projects and initiatives the board has initiated in the previous period and work with relevant parties to overcome the challenges insurers face in Jordan.

Saudi Re welcomes new CUO
Saudi Re has announced the appointment of Mr Abdelfattah Chami as CUO.
Mr Chami, who was Saudi Re’s head of non-life underwriting, is a well-known reinsurance professional in the MENA region, and has more than 20 years of experience in the technical and underwriting field. During his technically intensive career, he assumed different senior roles with key market players.
In his new executive role as CUO, Mr Chami will lead the underwriting team to further strengthen the relationship with clients and brokers and develop growth and diversification opportunities for Saudi Re.

UAE: Lockton MENA appoints new CEO as it grows regional footprint
Lockton MENA Limited has appointed Mr Ata Khatib as its new CEO. Mr Khatib succeeds Mr Tony Saada, who will focus on his responsibilities as regional CEO for MENA as the company continues to build the Lockton brand across the region. Lockton MENA in the DIFC will continue to oversee the other recently opened offices in the region. 
Mr Khatib brings a deep rooted experience of the region to the role, from first setting up Lockton’s offices in the DIFC in 2009 to becoming deputy CEO of Lockton MENA and sitting on its board. His regional and international relationships have helped Lockton MENA provide the best service and to exceed the expectations of its clients. His expertise in energy and power will prove invaluable as Lockton MENA continues to blaze the trail in the region’s energy and power sector.
Commenting on the appointment, Mr Saada said, “With Ata at the head of Lockton MENA, the business is ideally positioned to accelerate its focus on executing against key strategies due to its strong relationships with clients, regional and international markets and a proven track record of leadership.”
Mr Wael Khatib, senior partner & chairman - Lockton MENA said, “I join everyone in congratulating Ata on his new appointment. I would like to thank the leaders at Lockton throughout the region for their constant dedication to create a strong organisation. They have been deeply committed to laying the building blocks to continue Lockton MENA’s transformation along its planned growth strategy.” 

UAE: Salama elects new managing director 
The board of directors of Islamic Arab Insurance Co (Salama) has elected board member Mr Mustafa Ghazi Kheriba as the company’s new managing director. Mr Kheriba is also the chief operating officer of Abu Dhabi Financial Group. 
Mr Kheriba has held various senior positions in financial services and investment companies in the GCC, the US and Canada.
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