COP19: Peter Höppe on avoiding the poverty trap



Peter Höppe , Munich Reinsurarance Company

From Warsaw: COP19 UN Climate Change Conference 2013 in November 2013

COP19 (20/11/13) – Munich Re has been keeping a database on extreme weather events for the last 30 years, says Peter Höppe, head of its Geo Risks Research and Corporate Climate Centre.

He says it is clear from Munich Re’s data that in recent years we have had about three times as many extreme weather events occur compared to the early 1980s.

Höppe says insurance is important because several studies have shown that countries where there is a high insurance penetration, recover better from natural disasters than countries where insurance does not exist.

He says, sometimes the GDPs of these countries might even increase because governments have money to invest into repairs which goes into the economy.

Although there is little money to make out of insuring poor countries, Höppe says on a corporate social responsibility level, business can provide expertise to implement risk management solutions.

He acknowledges that sometimes events like Typhoon Haiyan cannot be prevented, so with insurance, recovery could happen sooner and not make such poor countries become poorer and trapped into poverty.