OECS say insurers support new building code

Insurers in St Kitts and Nevis are of the view that the Revised OECS Building Code will provide tremendous benefits to homeowners in the Federation, according to the OECS.

Amit Mohabir, general manager of NAGICO Insurances in St Kitts-Nevis, believes the revision of the building code is important for homeowners.

“I think there are significant benefits to be had in all sectors with the Revised Building Code in the OECS, taking into consideration disaster preparedness or catastrophe readiness,” said Mohabir.

“From an insurance perspective, I can tell you that apart from the ultimate safety of the homeowners, there are also benefits to be had in areas of premium savings.

“Over time, once we can prove that homes are built sturdier and more secure, taking natural perils into consideration, then ultimately the risk factor will be improved and this will increase our bargaining power as a region.

“The revision of these codes can lead to greater negotiations with reinsurers, which will result in savings that can be passed on to our homeowners. Reinsurers do pay attention to these things and do value certain efforts geared towards the enhancement of infrastructures and facilities.”

New part of assessing risks

Meanwhile, Alister Thomas of National Insurance Company Ltd in St Kitts-Nevis, also gave his support to the revision of the OECS Building Code.

“The Revised OECS Building Code is a welcomed move especially at a time when we are experiencing a lot of natural disasters. It is great that consideration was given to revise the building code. This would greatly impact the way insurance companies are able to underwrite the necessary risks. Once we have an updated and uniform building code, it will play a great part in how insurance assess risks,” he said.

The Revised OECS Building Code project is an ongoing initiative by the Global Climate Change Alliance, the European Union and the OECS Commission.

It seeks to improve the administrative approach to Building Code implementation and enforcement in the OECS sub-region.

The initiative has been a highly participatory process involving engagement of public and private sector stakeholders to review issues related to code compliance, legislation, and best practices.

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