May 10th, 2016

The Value of Adopting Own Risk and Solvency Assessment (ORSA)

Posted at 1:00 AM ET

Here we review recent GC Capital Ideas posts examining the benefits to (re)insurers adopting Own Risk and Solvency Assessment (ORSA) standards.


Gaining Optimum Value from ORSA: Own Risk and Solvency Assessment (ORSA) was first introduced as a regulatory requirement as a result of Solvency II. (Re)insurers would be wise to take note of the many similarities between Solvency II and the National Association of Insurance Commissioners’ (NAIC) ORSA and, where possible, avoid reinventing the wheel when trying to implement them. Now, and especially with the introduction of the Insurance Capital Standard (ICS), it is increasingly important for (re)insurers to avoid unnecessary, redundant and duplicative activity in the attainment of regulatory satisfaction by striving for a uniform framework to establish risk management and controls, corporate governance, transparency and disclosures across borders. In so doing, (re)insurers will gain optimum value from their ORSA.

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Own Risk and Solvency Assessment (ORSA) Framework: (Re)insurers that are required to implement Own Risk and Solvency Assessment (ORSA), or a similar framework such as Internal Capital Adequacy Assessment Process (ICAAP), may benefit by adopting a strong ORSA/enterprise risk management (ERM) framework. One such framework that could work on a global basis is illustrated below.

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Addressing Own Risk and Solvency Assessment/Enterprise Risk Management and Insurance Capital Standard Globally: In accordance with the objectives of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) and European Insurance and Occupational Pension Authority (EIOPA), Own Risk and Solvency Assessment (ORSA) is “people and risk-centric,” primarily employing a principles-based approach, as opposed to a rules-based approach. This means that decisions on matters related to risks are largely based on the judgment of individuals relying on underlying facts, as opposed to decisions being made mostly by following intricate sets of rules. This is similar to the principles-based approach taken by International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS). Although the calculation of the Solvency Capital Requirements (SCR) under Solvency II is rules based, like Insurance Capital Standard (ICS), Solvency II can be a “one size fits all” rules-based approach to capital, especially if the standard formula is used. (Re)insurers will need to find a way to incorporate ICS into their ORSA processes and the vehicle to accomplish this may be through the internal model.

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