The trade association believes the insurance ‘sector has a huge opportunity to work together to drive change’

The ABI has unveiled its new three-year strategy, emphasising that the risks faced by the world today present opportunities for insurers to prove their worth to society.

The strategy was launched by the ABI’s director general, Hannah Gurga, at the trade association’s annual dinner on 20 February 2023.

Addressing attendees, Gurga said that as the UK navigated numerous challenges - from climate change to the potential “mega risks” of tomorrow - the insurance and long-term savings sector stood ready to work with the government and regulators to drive change.

She continued: “Our new purpose and strategy set the direction for the ABI, bringing together key stakeholders and partners to drive positive change for our members, customers and wider society.

“Our industry is uniquely placed to support society, the economy and our planet. We stand ready to forge a new era of partnership between business and the state to tackle the long-term challenges we face, and as we seize the opportunities to protect and build a thriving society.”

Three-pronged strategy

The ABI’s new strategy focuses on three societal outcomes. These are:

  • Being trusted by customers.
  • Investing in people and the planet.
  • Creating an effective market.

These strategic pointers are underpinned by the ABI’s new purpose: “Together, driving change to build and protect a thriving society”.

“Building trust with customers is essential,” the trade body stated. “The ABI is committed to delivering initiatives that improve customer outcomes and [their] understanding of products.”

The association further aims to encourage an “inclusive and responsible sector” that has people and the planet at its core.

It said: “We will continue to focus on the role the sector has to play in supporting the economic, health and environmental opportunities and challenges facing society.

“From spearheading the industry’s transition to a net zero sustainable future through to Solvency II reform, the work has already begun and the ABI is committed to continue driving it forward.”

ABI chair Baroness Nicky Morgan added: “The focus provided by the ABI’s new strategy is key to securing positive outcomes for consumers and wider society, bringing with it the main partners needed to drive change.

“We are already making progress on the critical issues that will define the years ahead, including supporting the transition to UK becoming the first net zero aligned financial centre.

“I look forward to ensuring the ABI board supports Hannah and her team as well as ABI members to realise the opportunities for our sector and economy.”

Opportunities arising from challenges

The ABI’s strategy document added that the risks currently challenging both people and businesses were significant.

“We face geopolitical uncertainty, regulatory change, rapid innovations in technology and new types of mega risks, which jeopardise national and individual resilience,” it stated.

“These present challenges that, in some cases, cannot be met by government, industry or a single business alone.”

Despite the problematic risk landscape, the ABI emphasised that “challenge also provides opportunity - and our sector has a huge opportunity to work together to drive change”.

This includes the “opportunity to use technology to innovate and provide new products that better meet the needs of customers. Opportunity to use regulatory change to unlock investment in a broader range of productive assets under Solvency II. Opportunity to build public and private partnerships that drive use of preventive healthcare, meet the challenge of climate change and prepare for future systemic risks”.

It continued: “In this world, our industry must work together. To meet the challenges and seize the opportunities [and] to drive change for the benefit of consumers, the economy and wider society.”