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September 16, 2022

CII CEO says insurers could win greater freedom

By Zoya Malik

Alan Vallance, the Chartered Insurance Institute’s new chief executive, has urged insurance professionals to make the most of the FCA’s Consumer Duty “to take greater control of our destiny.”

Kicking off on 15 September Chartered Insurance Institute Shaping the future together conference, Mr Vallance said: “With the new Consumer Duty the FCA has said it wants to measure outcomes rather than inputs. This means that professionals who can demonstrate the value they are providing for consumers could win the freedom to do what works rather than being micro-managed by prescriptive regulation.

“I think there is a real opportunity here for us to take greater control of our destiny or be passive and wait for the regulator to act.”

During the conference, Ian Searle, head of department, consumer and retail policy of the Financial Conduct Authority, said the Consumer Duty was a cornerstone of the regulator’s three-year strategy and a significant shift in what the watchdog expects from firms.

On the key benefits and changes the regulator expects from the Consumer Duty, Mr Searle said the watchdog was looking for evidence of the outcomes that consumers will get and work to tackle groups that are not getting the optimal result from the profession’s services and products.

He said: “Hopefully in the long-term this shift should give us scope for a less prescriptive, more flexible regulatory framework overall.

“I hope you’ll all agree that the Consumer Duty, as a whole, is an excellent opportunity to improve trust and get that customer focus, which many of you are already striving for and deliver good outcomes for customers.

“Firm’s boards and management will need to work with us to really set the right culture to properly embed the duty in their organisations so that all staff are focussed on delivering good outcomes.”

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