LONDON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The Middle East and North Africa region is accustomed to turbulent times with periodic conflict, political upheavals and social disruption, although in the past week, geopolitical tensions have been elevated to new levels following the measures taken against Qatar on 5 June by the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries of Bahrain, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE), along with Egypt and Yemen.
In a new Best’s Briefing, titled “Geopolitical Tensions Create Short-Term Volatility in Qatar,” A.M. Best states its belief that the impact on Qatari insurer’s business profiles is likely to be negligible. Mahesh Mistry, senior director, said, "Of greater concern are insurers’ exposures to Qatar’s stock and real estate markets, as many will have sizeable exposures to and concentration within the domestic equity and real estate markets. This is likely to create volatility, particularly over the short term, of risk-adjusted capitalisation and operating performance."
The briefing notes that the Qatari insurers A.M. Best rates generally have strong balance sheets, with low net underwriting risk and surplus capital to absorb volatility in equity and real estate markets. Over the short term, A.M. Best expects a limited impact on the credit quality of insurers. However, if the situation persists over a longer period, then the economic repercussions on Qatar may be more severe and its effects could begin to impact the insurance sector and the rating fundamentals of A.M. Best-rated national insurers.
To access a complimentary copy of this briefing, please visit http://www3.ambest.com/bestweek/purchase.asp?record_code=262602.
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