Vinaora Nivo Slider 3.xVinaora Nivo Slider 3.x
Vinaora Nivo Slider 3.x

One Year since the First Cases of COVID-19 in the Caribbean and Central America – Perspectives from CCRIF CEO, Isaac Anthony

  Between February 12 and 14, 2020, the CCRIF Team, led by me, joined colleagues from across Central America and indeed the world, face-to-face in Costa Rica at the Understanding Risk Centroamérica Conference. Little did we know that this would be our last international trip in 2020. Shortly after our return to the Caribbean, the first cases of COVID-19 started emerging, resulting in us postponing a range of face-to-face engagements with our members, including training and even board meetings.

As a virtual company, we were able to pivot almost instantly taking many of our engagements online and working closely with our members and key stakeholders as we navigated this new norm and the upcoming Atlantic Hurricane Season. Indeed the 2020 Hurricane Season proved to be the most active hurricane season on record in terms of the number of tropical cyclones – recording 30 named storms, of which 13 became hurricanes, including 6 major hurricanes. Whilst the hurricane season officially starts on June 1 each year, the 2020 season witnessed pre-season cyclones, Arthur and Bertha, on May 16 and 27 respectively. We made nine payouts in 2020 totaling US$50 million, five of which were associated with Tropical Cyclones Eta or Iota, bringing total payouts to date to US$200 million.

Recognizing the early socio-economic impacts of the pandemic on our members beyond the health impacts, CCRIF was able to effectively engage with the donor community and was able to receive financial support of over US$20 million to assist our members with paying their premiums for the policy year 2020/21 which ends in May 2021 and for the upcoming policy year which starts in June 2021. We continue to be grateful for support from our donors and their ability to quickly level up to address the socio-economic dilemma facing our members.

As we navigate 2021, we are mindful of how the efforts implemented to control the spread of the virus – such as the closure of borders, curfews, and work-from-home orders to name a few – have had significant impacts on our members, resulting in both domestic and external challenges and having an inordinate impact on lives and livelihoods, and indeed, their overall development prospects. Studies and reports from various agencies are forecasting a slow recovery which is expected to take about 4 years or more. Many of these baseline growth projections assume that vaccine rollouts will gather steam in the latter half of 2021 and that oil prices will maintain a US$44 per barrel average as estimated by the World Bank on the year. As our member governments work towards mitigating external financial stresses and reducing debt and implementing mechanisms to alleviate rising poverty and vulnerability, we will work for hand in hand with them to facilitate meeting their disaster risk financing needs, specifically for risk transfer solutions for hurricanes, earthquakes, and excess rainfall events. This is increasingly important as we also grapple with the increasing incidence of natural hazards and also with the changing climate. In terms of recent hazard events, we extend our sympathies to the people of St. Vincent and the Grenadines following the eruption of the La Soufrière volcano and the impacts on the population, as well as livelihoods and infrastructure. Even though CCRIF does not currently provide insurance cover for volcanic eruptions, we have provided some support for the Government at this time.

Vinaora Nivo Slider 3.x

RADIO FROM VOICEOFTHECARIBBEAN.NET

Vinaora Nivo Slider 3.x
Vinaora Nivo Slider 3.x
Vinaora Nivo Slider 3.x
Vinaora Nivo Slider 3.x