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PRESS RELEASE from provider: Business Wire
This content is a press release from our partner Business Wire. The AP newsroom and editorial departments were not involved in its creation.

Best’s Market Segment Outlook: AM Best Revises Outlook to Stable for GCC Market

February 25, 2019

LONDON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Feb 24, 2019--AM Best has revised its outlook on the insurance markets of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) to stable from negative. Key factors supporting the outlook include the settling down of geo-political risks, limited disruption caused by the implementation of value-added tax, advances in risk management and improved regulatory sophistication across the region, continually strong capital buffers and extensive reinsurance support.

A new Best’s Market Segment Outlook, titled, “Market Segment Outlook: Gulf Cooperation Council,” notes these factors are offset by potential volatility in hydrocarbon prices (and the resultant pressure on public spending), heightened price competition and the uncertain outlook for longer-term premium growth. Gross domestic product growth in the GCC (i.e., Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates) is estimated to have recovered in 2018, and is expected to remain steady in 2019 and 2020, underpinned by planned diversification programmes to improve revenue streams and the financing of infrastructure projects.

The report adds the balance sheets of GCC insurers generally remain well-capitalised and capable of enduring catastrophe stress scenarios, although insurers remain more vulnerable to shocks in investment markets, which may become more severe in the face of economic and political uncertainty. Balance sheet strength could be eroded for some insurers as earnings come under increased pressure whilst shareholder dividend expectations remain unchanged. AM Best believes that insurers with more robust balance sheets, rationalised dividend policies, preferential access to business and geographic diversification are in a better position to withstand the pressures of the current operating environment.

To access the full copy of this market segment report, please visit http://www3.ambest.com/bestweek/purchase.asp?record_code=283085.

AM Best is a global rating agency and information provider with a unique focus on the insurance industry. Visit for more information.

Copyright © 2019 by A.M. Best Rating Services, Inc. and/or its affiliates.

ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

View source version on businesswire.com:https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20190224005034/en/

CONTACT: Salman Siddiqui

Associate Director, Analytics

+44 20 7397 0331

salman.siddiqui@ambest.comMahesh Mistry

Senior Director, Analytics

+44 20 7397 0325

mahesh.mistry@ambest.comYvette Essen

Director, Research, Communications &

Media – Europe, Middle East & Africa

+44 20 7397 0322

yvette.essen@ambest.comEdem Kuenyehia

Director, Market Development &

+44 20 7397 0280

Communications

edem.kuenyehia@ambest.com

KEYWORD: UNITED KINGDOM EUROPE

INDUSTRY KEYWORD: PROFESSIONAL SERVICES INSURANCE

SOURCE: AM Best

Copyright Business Wire 2019.

PUB: 02/24/2019 11:00 PM/DISC: 02/24/2019 11:01 PM

http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20190224005034/en