What is advocacy and how will it reduce my insurance premiums?

Posted: 13 December 2023

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What is advocacy and how will it reduce my insurance premiums...?

Since starting this role seven weeks ago many people have asked me what the Chamber does, so I explain our three core pillars - CONNECTING, INFORMING, and ADVOCATING for businesses in our region which often leads to the question - What does advocating mean?

Advocacy can be defined as any action that speaks in favour of, recommends, argues for a cause, supports, or defends and pleads on behalf of others. At Chamber we have clear focus areas where we do all the above as the only independent voice of businesses in our region.

  • Reducing red tape - Simplifying processes to enable businesses to thrive with ease. We understand the challenges of navigating bureaucracy, and we're dedicated to making it smoother for businesses to operate, innovate, and grow.
  • Reducing Inequitable Costs - Championing fair economic conditions in regional North Queensland. We strive to level the playing field, reducing costs that disproportionately affect our businesses, and ensuring that every enterprise, regardless of size, has a fair chance to succeed. 
  • Reducing Workforce Challenges - Addressing employment hurdles head-on. From skill shortages to recruitment challenges, we are proactive in finding solutions that help businesses find and retain the talent they need to excel.
  • Raising the Region - Beyond business, we aim to uplift the overall quality of life in Townsville. Tackling social issues like crime and enhancing liveability, particularly in central Flinders Street, is integral to our vision. A thriving community fosters a thriving economy.
But how could that reduce my insurance premiums? 

Insurance is an area where businesses in Northern Australia are disproportionally impacted with higher premiums that the rest of Australia. Thanks to the tireless advocacy of past CEO Ross McLennan, past Presidents Michele Falconieri and Chris Rockemer, and many others, around reducing insurance premiums the Cyclone Reinsurance Pool Corporation was created in 2022 with a $10 billion guarantee from the Federal Government. The goal is to reduce the cost of insurance premiums in areas at high risk of cyclones by providing reinsurance to insurers. This enables insurers to transfer their risk for cyclones and cyclone-related flood damage for homes, contents, residential strata and small business insurance throughout Australia up to a sum insured of $5m.

The Corporation is in a transition phase with 11 insurers currently signed up, and large insurers required to join the pool by the end of this year, while smaller insurers are required to sign up by the end of 2024. We have already heard from members with reduced premiums on residential cover and with the bigger insurers and banks having to sign up this year we hope to see reductions coming through on more local policies in 2024.

The ACCC is tasked with monitoring this transition to ensure reductions are passed on by insurers, and to provide a report each year. The second annual report has been issued recently.

You can read more about that HERE.

Plans for 2024 We are excited about our plans for 2024 and have included a taster below with some of the initiatives that will CONNECT, INFORM, ADVOCATE for you.

Have a great weekend

Heidi