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Latest SII reporting standards well received by industry

Sector practitioners have welcomed the publication earlier this month of the latest set of Solvency II implementing technical standards (ITS) by the European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority (Eiopa).

One source said that important revisions, relating to all three Solvency II pillars, had improved the reporting package and that the additional clarifications would aid the insurance industry as well as supervisors.

"If we start with good practices now, they will yield benefits for many years," he added.

The ITS and guidelines were finalised following a public consultation earlier this year, during which the watchdog received over 4,500 comments.

Eiopa chairman Gabriel Bernardino said that the public consultation and development had been successful.

"The publication of these standards and guidelines is a milestone," he added.

Executives in the industry have previously voiced concerns around individual national regulators' implementation of the new regime.

Chief risk officer and general counsel at Lloyd' Sean McGovern said that the UK insurance sector must be vigilant and ensure that Solvency II implementation was not "overzealous" compared to other EU member states.

Speaking at the Reactions London Market Conference last month (25 June), McGovern said: "A lot of us are anxious, and perhaps a bit suspicious, that there isn't a level playing field."

"It's not a question of 'gold-plating', it's about overzealous implementation if you like," he added.

Dave Matcham, CEO of the International Underwriting Authority, commented: "I have members who are licensed in about seven or eight EU member states. They are going through the Solvency II process in those states, and they can compare what's happening in the UK regime.

"Nine times out of 10 it is not favourable."

The European Commission now has three months to decide whether or not to endorse the updated guidelines in full or in part.

The commission can extend the decision-making period by a month if it feels it needs to.

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