Council (EC) has lent its qualified support to the continuation of
the insurance Block Exemption Regulation (BER) for insurers in the
European Union (EU).
Expiring on 31 March, the BER, as last
renewed in 2003, sets out the conditions under which insurance
companies can cooperate in the fields of joint calculations and
studies, standard policy conditions, insurance pools and security
devices without infringing EU competition law.
According to the European federation of
insurers and reinsurers, the Comité Européen des Assurances (CEA),
under the EC’s current proposals cooperation on calculations,
tables and studies, possibly with some redrafting, would be
permitted while insurance pools would also be permitted, but with
Standard policy conditions and security
devices are excluded in the council’s proposal.
The CEA noted with regret the EC’s decision to
exclude sections of the BER that enable insurers to jointly
establish and distribute non-binding standard policy conditions or
to cooperate in providing specifications for security devices.
The EC will now hold a public hearing on 2
June about its decision to renew the BER. If it then decides to
renew any parts of the BER, it will consult on a draft
If the council decides not to renew any part
of the BER, it will publish a communication before the end of