Qatar Reinsurance (Qatar Re) has ceased operations from its branch office in Singapore, with effect from 20th July, this year.
Qatar Reinsurance has stopped writing new and renewal business.
The company stated that it is working with its Singapore-based staff, its clients and broking partners and regulators to ensure that an orderly administration of its existing business is executed from the branch.
The decision is limited to its Singapore branch and does not apply to Qatar Re’s sister company Antares Asia, which will continue to participate on the Lloyd’s Asia Platform.
Qatar Reinsurance CEO Gunther Saacke said: “Like many of our peers, we have been looking very closely at our business with a view to enhancing underwriting profitability and operational efficiency in what continues to be a very challenging environment for global reinsurers.”
Saacke noted that as a reinsurer, the company is committed to long-term sustainability, it is appropriate to reflect on the performance of its underwriting portfolio and its effectiveness on the distribution network and to adapt an approach, which is in the best interest of the company, policyholders and shareholders.
In early June this year, the company had suspended its branch office in Dubai. The distribution throughout Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region will be provided by Qatar Insurance Group’s existing operations in Doha, Dubai, Oman and Kuwait.
When Dubai operations were suspended, Saacke stated that the company had been conducting a strategic review of its business with an objective to boost underwriting profitability and operational efficiency and realising its strategic objectives.
In January this year, the company secured authorisation from the Prudential Regulation Authority in the UK to conduct regulated activities in the UK from its branch office in London.
Michael van der Straaten will lead the branch, in addition to his current role as the company’s chief underwriting officer for Long Tail and Specialty Classes.