The CEO of the Pacific Catastrophe Risk Insurance Company (PCRIC), Mr. Aholotu Palu, engaged in fruitful discussions with the Hon. Hu’akavameiliku, the Prime Minister of Tonga. Expressing sincere gratitude, Mr. Palu personally thanked the Prime Minister for his instrumental role as the keynote speaker at PCRIC’s inaugural COP28 side event in Dubai.
The Prime Minister’s impactful statement played a pivotal role in enhancing PCRIC’s visibility on the global stage, drawing attention to its strategic tools in Disaster Risk Financing (DRF) as vital instruments in addressing the financial gap caused by climate change-induced disasters.
Discussions encompassed several key areas, including the potential introduction of a DRF course at the Tonga National University. This initiative aims to fill gaps in the current suite of courses, ensuring a comprehensive educational approach to disaster resilience. Likewise, PCRIC is actively collaborating with the University of the South Pacific to roll out a program closely aligned with DRF domains.
However, this initiative seeks potential financial support via a proposal to be submitted to the Global Shield Solutions Platform (GSSP) for education and research over the next three years. Additionally, talks explored the possibility of extending insurance covers to State-Owned Enterprises, safeguarding their assets against the unpredictable nature of disasters.
Hon. Hu’akavameiliku lent his support to the development of the new drought parametric insurance product, proposing triggers both before and after an event to optimize its effectiveness. The meeting also delved into the integration of PCRIC and its services into the Forum Economic Ministers Meeting (FEMM) agenda and the Pacific Islands Leaders Forum meeting, given Tonga’s current chairmanship.
The CEO then highlighted PCRIC’s significant recognition received from global organisations such as the Loss and Damage (L&D) Facility, the Global Shield, the World Food Programme, and the InsuResilience Global Partnership, to collaborate in implementing DRF related activities in building Pacific regional resilience.
Moreover, the inaugural Pacific Region Disaster Risk Finance (DRF) Workshop in Fiji next month, with the aim of strengthening relationships with Pacific Island countries, was also discussed. Lastly, the potential expansion of insurance coverage into the health sector, furthering the scope of PCRIC’s impact in building resilience across various sectors, was explored.
The meeting concluded with Mr. Palu seeking ongoing support from the Prime Minister for PCRIC’s vital work in the region, emphasizing the importance of collaborative efforts to enhance disaster resilience. Expressing gratitude for the exceptional work manifested by PCRIC’s team, the Prime Minister commended their efforts, evident in the increasing number of new and potential members and policyholders.