AGENDA

 
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  • 29 April - Monday

    Registration, Opening Plenary, Meeting Hub and Roundtable Sessions

  • The reinsurance market in 2024 is perhaps the most bracing in the sector’s history. Reinsurers have strong reasons to be bullish after a firm 1/1 that built on last year’s heady premium gains. But as the market courts admirers among would-be investors, and capacity looks to deploy into areas of attractive rate, old hands in the market are closely watching a range of interconnected risks and challenges, from embracing innovation and fostering talent, to an unpredictable risk outlook and fast-emerging technologies. The panel debate will focus on how the industry can address the challenges and shape them from risks into opportunities.

    Discussion points:
    1. Attracting Investment
    2. Capacity, capacity, capacity
    3. Embracing Innovation
    4. Nurturing Artificial Intelligence
    5. Navigating risks
    6. Fostering talent

    Main Stage Session
    Where
    Spice Ballroom

  • 30 April - Tuesday

    Registration, Meeting Hub and Roundtable Sessions

Opening Keynotes

Meet our Opening Keynotes


VICTORIA (VICKY) CARTER
Chairman, Global Capital Solutions, International

Victoria (Vicky) Carter is Chairman of Global Capital Solutions, International for Guy Carpenter & Company Ltd. She is a key member of the Guy Carpenter leadership team, responsible for driving new business production across the firm’s global operations and a member of the firm’s Executive Committee.

Vicky is Deputy Chair of Lloyd’s, a Member of the Council of Lloyd’s, the Lloyd’s Remuneration Committee, the Lloyd’s Audit Committee and the Lloyd’s Nominations and Governance Committee. In addition, she is Chairman of the Lloyd’s of London Foundation and Lloyd’s Community Programme and a Trustee of the Sick Children’s Trust. Vicky is a Freeman of the City of London and a Liveryman of The Worshipful Company of Insurers.

Vicky has over 40 years of experience in the reinsurance industry. She was the first female founder of a Lloyd’s intermediary, the first female Deputy Chair of Lloyd’s and has operated in a number of senior executive positions within the broking sector.

ANDREW HORTON
Group Chief Executive Officer
BA Natural Sciences, ACA

Andrew joined QBE as Group Chief Executive Officer in September 2021. He was previously the CEO, and before that the Finance Director, of Beazley Group, a specialist insurer based in the United Kingdom with operations in Europe, the United States and Asia. Prior to this, he held various senior finance roles in ING, NatWest and Lloyds Bank. Andrew has more than 30 years’ experience across insurance and banking, and has extensive experience across international markets.

Our focus for 2024

DWIC, in association with the Dubai International Financial Centre Authority, is celebrating its 20th anniversary with record high attendance in 2024. Those 20 years represent a period during which Dubai’s success on the global stage has transformed the Emirate almost beyond recognition. The risk transfer environment has also changed dramatically within the same time span. In 2024, the re/insurance sector is entering a new era and is presented with one of the most beguiling markets in generations, faced by a web of interconnected challenges and huge opportunities.

Attracting Capital

Reinsurance premium is at new highs after the market reset of 1/1 2023, followed by a profitable year, and a firm 1/1 2024 renewal. New capital continues to flow into the reinsurance industry, across traditional reinsurers as well as the rebounding ILS third party capital market. The DIFC is already seeing an influx of traditional re/insurance capital and broker business, from markets across not just the Middle East, but European markets, emerging African economies, Latin America and Asia Pacific. Traditional reinsurance capital and capital markets, brought together into a regional hub such as the DIFC, can find strong underwriting revenues and profitability in this sector.
The re/insurance sector is looking for further capital to get behind the sector, enjoying the bounties of the new market cycle, with enhanced premium opportunities to deploy capital to great effect. However, the market continues to face uncertainties and outside investors continue to have many options available. Underwriters should continue to showcase quality and discipline to differentiate themselves from the pack, while market-leading hubs such as DIFC continue to demonstrate a state-of-the-art regulatory and operating environment.

Capacity, capacity, capacity

The reinsurance market has cycle has turned and premium volumes have climbed to new levels. Reinsurers want to take advantage of pricing opportunities to grow profitably, looking where to deploy capacity into classes, perils and territories that exhibit strong demand as well as sufficient rate for risks being underwritten. Brokers are bringing new volumes of business to place into the DIFC, and have reported fresh capacity availability globally at the 1/1 reinsurance renewal. However, brokers can still struggle to find sufficient capacity for many of the risks they seek to place. A big question is whether underwriters can rise to this challenge and deploy sufficient capacity, while also exhibiting discipline, looking to maintain their recent gains in rate adequacy and profitability.

 

Embracing Innovation

Technology has combined with the MGA model to create a revolutionary startup model for the re/insurance industry, significantly reducing the barriers of previous generations of market entrants. Technology-led MGAs are setting up in record numbers, pioneering growth in specialty business, excess and surplus lines, and for emerging and intangible risks. These innovators need the right regulatory environment to incubate and grow, and the DIFC has demonstrated it has the characteristics the market needs, seeing unparalleled MGA growth. Many of the risks being placed by these MGAs are being fed by rich data and analytics, combined with technology rollout, contributing to the digital transformation now in full swing across the commercial insurance and reinsurance sector globally.

Nurturing Artificial Intelligence

The re/insurance market is in the throes of digital transformation. AI promises to change not just the insurance industry, but business and society in myriad ways. Simultaneously a source of incalculable risk and opportunity, a revolutionary driver of operating efficiency and data-driven decision making, and a threat to replace humans with machines – AI is everywhere. What’s clear is that the industry should nurture emerging technological trends in order to take advantage of their opportunities, rather than ignore them and become subject to them, potentially at our peril.

 

Navigating volatile risks

Insurance markets thrive on risk as opportunity, but the degree of uncertainty and volatility around the globe is also provides a challenging risk environment for re/insurance companies to navigate. Sections of the world have entered a challenging new era of insecurity and instability, presenting heightened insurance risks to the market, and fresh demand for protection for multinationals and their assets, employees and high net worth individuals, using products such as cyber insurance, PV and CPRI. Regional hubs such as Dubai can provide a combination of local expertise and a mature regulatory environment as a base to broker and underwrite products for niche specialty risks, from PV and CPRI.

Embracing Innovation

Technology has combined with the MGA model to create a revolutionary startup model for the re/insurance industry, significantly reducing the barriers of previous generations of market entrants. Technology-led MGAs are setting up in record numbers, pioneering growth in specialty business, excess and surplus lines, and for emerging and intangible risks. These innovators need the right regulatory environment to incubate and grow, and the DIFC has demonstrated it has the characteristics the market needs, seeing unparalleled MGA growth. Many of the risks being placed by these MGAs are being fed by rich data and analytics, combined with technology rollout, contributing to the digital transformation now in full swing across the commercial insurance and reinsurance sector globally.

Talent: the new normal

Competition for talent has never been quiet in the re/insurance world, but demand for re/insurance skills is at an all-time high and ever-changing. The experience and expertise needed for tomorrow are shifting unlike anything ever seen previously due to the transformative role of technology amid the industry’s digital transformation. This has created a new normal for talent. Any conversation about where to find profitable growth will almost inevitably combine the role of underwriting or broking expertise with the role increasingly played by technology insights. These topics are inextricably linked, as increasing use of technology can also allow greater emphasis on core skillsets of relationship building and decision-making at underwriting risk and portfolio levels. The DIFC has been a beacon for talent from across the globe, needed in order for the reinsurance sector to continue grow and serve the world’s risk transfer needs.