The consideration given to sustainability in our business operations relates principally to our reinsurance products and services as well as the management of our investments and is taking on added importance given the growing awareness among the general public of sustainability issues.
Our business activities do not give rise to any direct negative impacts on society or the environment. Rather, our reinsurance services help to ensure that societal and environmental risks can be adequately insured and that the effects in the event of loss or damage can be rectified or mitigated. At its very heart, the business of insurance involves cushioning the burden caused by loss events and providing financial protection for companies and private individuals alike through the transfer and spreading of risks. In this way, we can prevent risks having adverse impacts on society and our company. Often, it is only the backing of internationally operating reinsurers such as Hannover Re that enables primary insurers to cover large individual risks and the risks associated with natural perils. We thereby help to increase insurance density, especially in emerging and developing countries, and promote social and financial inclusion. Furthermore, by offering sustainable reinsurance solutions and supporting sustainable primary insurance solutions, we are able to respond to the opportunities and risks associated with these issues and come up with innovations. With this in mind, we support sustainable insurance solutions that are designed to minimise negative environmental and social repercussions. It is nevertheless important to bear in mind the potential indirect environmental and social impacts of the reinsurance industry. Extensive exclusions can, for example, even cause the insurance gap to grow inasmuch as the protection in place against risks becomes inadequate. It is therefore vital to give comprehensive consideration to all possible implications.
In property reinsurance we support the expansion of renewable energy sources, ranging from wind power generated on- and offshore to photovoltaic and geothermal energy. Insurance protection begins with the construction phase and accompanies the customer through many years of operation.
Furthermore, we encourage the expansion of products in response to climate change, such as weather insurance and coverage for energy-saving warranties, and by delivering insurance solutions in areas such as microinsurance and agricultural risks we also play a part in the societal development of more structurally deprived regions. These enable people with scant financial means to protect themselves against fundamental risks such as illness, disability, impacts of natural disasters or crop failures. We are also taking an active part in the development of index-based disaster finance concepts that guarantee rapid financial assistance for countries in South America and Asia in the event of natural catastrophes.
In life and health reinsurance demographic changes around the world are leading to stronger demand for the reinsurance of longevity risks. We are also seeing rising demand for socalled lifestyle products, which principally involve insurance solutions under which the premium is linked to an insured’s healthy lifestyle (e. g. fitness and nutritional habits).
|Goal to be achieved by 2020:|
Sustainable insurance solutions
|Supporting, developing and expanding sustainable insurance solutions||We continue to support weather-related products as well as
insurance solutions for renewable energy sources such as solar,
hydro and wind power.|
We also support energy-saving warranty products in California.
In 2018 we wrote a premium volume in the mid-triple-digit millions of euros in the area of agricultural risks, roughly three quarters of which stemmed from developing and emerging markets of South America, Asia and Africa.
In addition to developing agricultural insurance products, we are involved in various initiatives and projects. For example, we assume risks through African Risk Capacity, which offers insurance covers against extreme weather events for African countries.