Message from the Chairman


As we start 2023, I am pleased to be writing my inaugural report as Chair of the GIA. I would like to thank Shaun for all his efforts as the previous Chair and wish him every success in his new role as Chair of the Gibraltar Finance Centre Council.

Looking back on 2022, it has been an eventful year with the UK political events causing volatility for the value sterling and compounded volatility in investment markets as we move into an inflationary period. The invasion of the Ukraine has not only caused huge humanitarian issues but also a disruption to supply chains and higher energy costs exacerbating inflation globally. Additional supply chain issues persisting in China. On top of this, the Dual Pricing changes in the UK and the skilled labour shortages with an inflationary backdrop have created perhaps the most tumultuous pricing environment for general insurers to be witnessed in a long time. Specifically in the motor market, we wait to see if the changes implemented via the OICP injury portal will lead to material claims savings.

Closer to home, in Gibraltar we continue to work closely with the GFSC as the jurisdiction looks for closer regulatory alignment with the UK in the run up to the UK implementation of the Gibraltar Authorisations Regime. The aim of this process is to achieve what is referred to as equivalence of outcomes for customers. Of paramount importance to the Gibraltar insurance sector is the continued access to the UK market in a post Brexit trading environment.

As an association, the GIA Executive will continue to work closely with the Gibraltar Financial Centre Council to engage with Government and the GFSC, with the aim of making sure Gibraltar is aligned with the UK whilst continuing to have a proportionate and pragmatic approach that promotes a business friendly environment for existing and new firms, whilst maintaining a high standard of regulation and policyholder protection.

I would like to thank everyone within the GIA, including members of the executive, sub-committees and wider membership for their contribution and support.

Paul Cole


Following the New Year’s Eve agreement announced in 2020, discussions continue in respect of a Treaty agreement between the EU and the UK in respect of Gibraltar, with target dates for an agreement not yet announced but seemingly closer. For the time being there remains continued uncertainty around the fluidity of the Gibraltar ~ Spain border crossing, which remains an important issue given the number of frontier workers regularly crossing the Border to work in Gibraltar, which was last estimated to number in excess of 8,000 people according to the last set of Government published statistics. Certainty around this matter will no doubt help attract professionals to the territory, at a time when many parts of the industry are struggling to attract people with the appropriate skills.

Regulation and Legislation

Alignment will continue to be a key theme for 2023. As part of this process, we have seen changes to regulated roles the need to be filled by insurance companies under what is referred to as Schedule 14 and Schedule 15 of the Financial Services Act, with firms submitting plans in 2022 as to how these requirements will be met.

Additionally, the recent changes to the Financial Services Act under Section 83 (a) has caused some angst amongst the membership. We have been working with both the GFCC and the GFSC to ensure the related Guidance Note will provide some clarity to Boards as this regulation will operate in practice in a manner that is not cumbersome for stakeholders.

Consumer duty will be an increasing area of focus for firms, as the implementation date approached later this year. More recently, the GFSC has stated in intends to follow the UK regulatory approach to Operational Resilience.

During 2022, there was much engagement with the GFSC in respect of the interpretation of when premium debtors fell due and how counterparty default charges would be applied in such circumstances. The view of the GFSC appeared to differ to the approach being adopted in the UK. I am pleased to report that the outcome of our discussions was a local approach that was both risk based and pragmatic. An example of Gibraltar leading the way.

Other challenges that we continue face but are working closely with the regulator on are around Solvency II group supervision that can be particularly challenging given that typically Gibraltar insurers have client facing service companies in the UK that have historically not been within the scope of Solvency II supervision. The application of Group Supervision can also be a barrier to funding solutions that in the past have helped new entrants into the market and created both customer choice and healthy competition. We continue to engage with the GFSC in this area.

In another big change for motor insurers, May 2021 saw the implementation of the long-awaited whiplash reforms coming through the Civil Liability Act 2018. These reforms made changes to the claims process for low value road traffic accidents (typically whiplash claims) which are now settled via the online portal without the need for the Court action. The changes were intended to reduce the claims cost for small and frivolous claims.

This report would not be complete without mention of Gibraltar being placed onto the FATF Grey List. Whilst the impact on the insurance sector may be limited, I am sure we all looked forward to Gibraltar’s removal from the grey list in due course given the efforts that have been made to address the findings of the last Moneyval report. Despite this development, we continue to see interest from firms looking to set up in Gibraltar.

During 2022 a UK consultation was published around changes to the application of the Solvency II rules for UK insurers post Brexit. The changes appear to focus on the application of the matching adjustment for life companies, and the calculation of the risk margin for general insurers. These changes appear to be aligned with the UK Governments desire to make the UK an attractive place to invest and to reduce the reporting burden for insurers.

Insurance Management

Gibraltar continues to have an insurance managers regime. Whilst the regulatory focus on local substance and the legislative change around the regulated individuals requirements can be seen as a challenge for the insurance management sector, the regulator remains supportive of the insurance management model and continues to allow firms to outsource certain functions and roles.

There are numerous firms that continue to adopt an insurance manager model. Given the difficulty in attracting experience insurance professionals to the jurisdiction the outsourcing model of an insurance manager remains important particularly if the sector wishes to grow. In addition to on-going management, the insurance manager remains a key advisor in helping new firms establish in Gibraltar.


As with insurance companies, intermediaries also face the challenges of consumer duty and the requirements to protect vulnerable customers. Previously, the Government has sought to make Gibraltar more attractive MGA’s looking to set up, by allowing such firms to use the services of an insurance manager.

To date no new MGA’s have set up in Gibraltar. Given the headwinds facing the insurance sector alongside rising reinsurance costs, the MGA model appears increasingly challenged as we move into 2023.

Membership and Finances

An update with be provided by the Treasurer during the AGM.


Last but not least, I would like to thank everyone within the GIA, including members of the executive, sub-committees and wider membership for their contribution and support.