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Australian Government - Natural Disaster Insurance Review

The Review

The Natural Disaster Insurance Review will focus on insurance arrangements for individuals and small businesses for damage and loss associated with flood and other natural disasters. The Inquiry is to examine ways to ensure that individuals and communities at risk of extreme weather events are aware of the risks but are able to obtain suitable protection against those risks, including having access to insurance.

The terms of reference include the following matters:

  • the extent of, and reasons for, non-insurance and underinsurance for natural disasters;
  • the ability of private insurance markets to offer adequate and affordable insurance cover for individuals, small businesses and governments for natural disasters;
  • whether there is a case for subsidising insurance premiums for individuals and small businesses in the areas of highest risk facing the highest premiums;
  • whether there is a role for the Commonwealth Government in providing disaster insurance or reinsurance to the private sector;
  • the relationship between disaster mitigation measures and the availability and affordability of flood and other disaster insurance; and
  • whether there is a need for a national disaster fund to support the rebuilding of public infrastructure in the aftermath of events such as the recent floods.

The Review Panel is Mr John Trowbridge (Chair), Mr Jim Minto (Member) and Mr John Berrill (Member). The Panel is supported by a Secretariat based in Treasury.

The Panel sought input from community and business for the Review and submissions were invited in June 2011 following the release of the Issues Paper which gave guidance to those wishing to make a submission.

The Panel will report to the Assistant Treasurer by 30 September 2011.