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ABI sets up new forums for protection strategy

The Association of British Insurers has restructured its protection committees to separate day-to-day work from long-term strategic thinking.

Two new committees, the protection development committee and the protection strategy committee, will be chaired by Legal & General managing director for protection Bernie Hickman and Norwich Union director of pricing Clive Bolton respectively.

The development committee will deal with immediate and medium-term issues including the drafting and updating of ABI statements of best practice and industry guidance. It will focus on all group and individual protection products, including long-term care cover.

The strategy committee will take a longer-term view, acting as a forum for detailed strategy and policy debate. It aims to develop a blueprint and then create the ideal political and consumer climate together with the right legal, regulatory and distribution framework to help meet consumers’ lifetime protection needs. It will encompass all group and individual products, including LTC, but will also look at new and emerging protection markets.

Head of health and protection insurance Nick Kirwan says: “The new committees will build on the excellent work that has already been done to improve the clarity and reputation of protection insurance and to plan for the challenges that lie ahead in the protection market. Separating the day-to-day work from the longer-term strategic thinking will allow each committee to focus in more detail on its objectives.”

Hickman says: “I am delighted to be given this opportunity to chair the committee driving forward the more immediate priorities for improving consumer confidence in protection policies. There are many important areas to address such as customer understanding of total and permanent disability, in addition to continuing to promote consistency in the fair treatment of customers at the time of a claim.”

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