Benefits of reinsurance pool remain to be seen
5 May 2023
North Queenslander homeowners have been desperately waiting for the day when the cyclone reinsurance pool kicks in and insurance premiums start to drop.
Unfortunately, as the costs of living continue to soar, so too are insurance premiums, causing not only financial woes, but also confusion and frustration as households struggle to make ends meet.
Katter’s Australian Party (KAP) and Hinchinbrook MP, Nick Dametto blames the drawn-out implementation of the cyclone reinsurance pool for rising insurance costs.
“Despite coming into effect in July 2022, insurance purchasers are yet to see any savings passed on to their yearly premiums,” Mr Dametto said.
“The reality is, only two insurers so far have joined the pool, Allianz Australia and Sure Insurance.
“Many of the remaining major insurers are expected to join the pool post July 2023 however smaller insurers have until the end of 2024. The pool needs competition before consumers will see a reduction in premiums and sadly, the end of 2024 will be too late for some.
“Adding fuel to the fire is the fact that building standards have changed significantly, meaning many homes across North Queensland are more cyclone resilient than ever before and begs the question ‘what are we really paying for?’
“We’ve also seen the State Government forking out millions of dollars for the Household Resilience Program which they claim has reduced insurance premiums by 9%, but I can assure you I haven’t come across one person in North Queensland who has told me about their premiums lowering.”
The Hinchinbrook MP is calling on the State Government to ease the financial pain of Queenslanders between now and December 2024, by temporarily abolishing stamp duty on insurance premiums. Figures from 2021 show that the Queensland Government received up to $65 million per annum from stamp duty on insurance policies.
“In the absence of an effective and operational reinsurance pool, we need to see some benefit passed on to consumers and that instant relief can come from State Government.
“Why is the consumer the only one expected to absorb rising costs. The State Labor Government needs to do their part. After all, it is the Brisbane floods and the Olympics that the North is really paying for.
“I am committed to making sure any benefits from the reinsurance pool scheme are passed on to consumers.
“I will be writing to the Treasurer ahead of next month’s State Budget to once again seek some relief from the State Government for homeowners in the North.