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Conn. Commissioner: U.S. Should Stop Apologizing for Regulatory System

Amid the debate over how the European Union's Solvency II regulatory regime will affect U.S. insurers, Connecticut Insurance Commissioner Thomas Leonardi said the United States...
August 23, 2011

Amid the debate over how the European Union's Solvency II regulatory regime will affect U.S. insurers, Connecticut Insurance Commissioner Thomas Leonardi said the United States should "stop apologizing" for its regulatory system.

The issue of whether and how the European Commission will approve the United States' state-led insurance regulatory system as being equivalent with Europe's Solvency II has heated up in recent weeks as the commission began the first round of so-called "third-country" equivalent assessments. The first group to be evaluated by the commission includes Bermuda, Japan and Switzerland. The United States is not in that group, but many industry experts expect the U.S. system will be assessed in short order. Obtaining certification from the European Commission that the U.S. system is equivalent to Solvency II is "very important" if the United States wants to remain competitive in the international insurance marketplace, Leonardi said.

But at the same time, Leonardi said, the United States has shown its regulatory system is effective. "We need to stop apologizing for our regulatory system. While not perfect, the national, state-based system has worked well," Leonardi said, adding "We saw that after the [financial] crisis."

Read more on CT Commissioner's regulatory comments: U.S. Should Stop Apologizing for Regulatory System (BestWire 8/16/11)