Read the latest edition of AIR and MEIR as an Interactive e-book

Apr 2024

GAIF as a symbol of growth

Source: Middle East Insurance Review | Mar 2024

Everyone working in the (re)insurance sector in the MENA region is aware that, despite sociopolitical setbacks and tensions, the industry is undergoing a period of acute change.
And this change is driven by opportunity, growth and the maturing of the market. In other words, the sector is not growing because insurers are pushing themselves onto consumers – but because customers are pulling them forward, demanding new products and personalised cover.
Demand is increasing both in personal lines and corporate lines because of increasing awareness of the need for protection as well as because of economic growth. Demand for insurance, quite simply, is growing.
This palpable uptick in energy levels was very evident in Muscat last month at the 34th meeting of GAIF. A huge number of delegates – around 2,200 – turned out to hear the informative sessions, network frantically – and get together in social settings to reaffirm old friendships and forge new ones.
But there was an overriding buzz of ‘success’ in every interaction. Delegates knew that they were in the middle of an unprecedented growth phase and no one wanted to miss out.
The quality of the agenda was truly world class and enriched the knowledge base of everyone who attended the adroitly-managed sessions. The insurance regulator session alone would have made the trip to Oman worth it for many – as delegates got to hear valuable insights first-hand from the people responsible for setting the regulatory environment for the entire industry.
Were there any overriding insights to be gleaned from the proceedings of GAIF? Certainly, there were.
The first is that Saudi Arabia has already become a speeding juggernaut of insurance growth and there is no prospect of the momentum slowing anytime soon. Every facet of insurance and reinsurance in Saudi Arabia is witnessing remarkable growth – driven in part by the central government’s Vision 2030 and in part by the fact that the regional centre of gravity of business and economic growth is shifting to the kingdom.
Readers of Middle East Insurance Review can rest assured that we will be covering the remarkable growth of Saudi Arabian insurance in our pages every month.
The second is that AI is already here and is being analysed and explored by all smart industry CEOs.
Few CEOs yet have the definitive answer as to what they will use AI for – but they know that they will be using it more and more as each day goes by. They acknowledge that this will undoubtedly lead to job losses in some of the traditional roles – but they also know that AI will mean the creation of a whole new raft of insurance jobs that we have not yet imagined.
Human resources will have to adapt to become familiar with AI, large-language models, deep learning and more – not just in the insurance sector but across the whole financial services spectrum.
GAIF 34 held up a mirror up to the industry for the coming year. Happily, the reflection was one of a sector in the midst of tremendous growth.
Paul McNamara
Editorial director
Middle East Insurance Review
| Print
Enter the code shown above in the box below.

Note that your comment may be edited or removed in the future, and that your comment may appear alongside the original article on websites other than this one.


Recent Comments

There are no comments submitted yet. Do you have an interesting opinion? Then be the first to post a comment.