Sinn Féin spokesperson on Business, Enterprise and Innovation, Maurice Quinlivan TD, today commented on the effect high insurance costs are having on SMEs after the Cost of Insurance Working Group published their report on the cost of employer and public liability insurance for businesses in Ireland.
Speaking today, Deputy Quinlivan said; “Businesses are being bled dry with outrageous increases in insurance premiums that they are required to have by law, and are forcing some low margin enterprises out of business.
“The CSO recorded an increase of 57% in insurance premiums from 2011-2016. This cannot be solely blamed on high pay-outs for injury costs, and requires reform of the way insurance companies operate.
“Over the past few months, the Oireachtas Committee on Business, Enterprise and Innovation has been examining the cost of doing business in Ireland, and the cost of insurance has been highlighted as a major obstacle by every single business organisation that gave evidence.
“ISME’s submission to our Committee described the high insurance increases as not just merely high, but enterprise-threatening, in areas such as hospitality, distribution, and retail.
“I welcome the recommendations of the working group to gather more comprehensive data on insurance premiums and claims from the CSO, Central Bank and Courts Service, to give more of an insight into the opaque practices of insurance companies.
“A number of businesses surveyed by Chamber’s Ireland for this report responded to say they have suffered increases of over 100% in their premiums. This is totally unacceptable.
“As a result some businesses are being forced to opt for high excess levels to try and afford their premiums, which can be very risky for businesses if a claim is made.
“The government must act quickly and introduce measures aimed at providing certainty to business owners in relation to insurance costs, as these escalating insurance premiums are crippling some viable businesses.” He concluded.
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