Pressurise insurers to cease operations in Burma!

4 Nov

According to Aavaz, one of the world’s oldest and most respected secretive insurers, Lloyd of London, is the umbrella overseer of insurers for the Burmese junta’s ventures including in aviation and shipping. Its chairman, Lord Levene is also on the board of oil corporation, TOTAL which operates in Burma. Talk about conflict of interest!

Aavaz has set up a campaign microsite urging concerned people to email Peter Levene, asking him to cease as well as disclose its operations in Burma.

According to a Guardian commentary by Mathiason, the Foreign Office (of UK) has written a letter to the Baron, ‘reminding him of the UK government’s official position of discouraging business with the country’. Levene has also said he would not resign from TOTAL and that his position has no impact on his reputation nor that any of his business dealings support the junta.

In another news report, other insurance companies that are still operating in Burma include Hannover Re, Catlin, Atrium Underwriting, Tokio Marine, Sompo Japan, Mitsui Sumitomo Insurance, QBE, ACE, Labuan Re, OCBC Bank, Pana Harrison, Target Insurance Broker and AI Wasl.

The list, which came from a report, ‘Insuring Repression’ by the Burma Campaign UK surveyed over 500 global insurance companies and professionals. They discovered that companies in London, Antwerp, Singapore, Thailand, Germany, Bermuda, Japan and Malaysia continue to provide insurance services which support the Burmese junta.

According to the list, companies based in Singapore who have sold insurance to other companies in Burma include:

. OCBC Bank which stated that it ‘provides  insurance services to Singapore owned companies in Burma;
. Pana Harrison, a Singaporean based insurance broker, who is ‘active in the aviation sector, providing insurance services for regime owned airlines’;
.Target Insurance Broker, ‘a Singaporean broker which works in the Lloyd’s, Australian and European markets’ and ‘provides insurance brokerage services for companies in Burma’;

Singaporean companies on the ‘shame list’ refer to entities who have either not replied to correspondence from the campaign group or openly stated that they do not ‘provide insurance to foreign companies operating in Burma’. They include:

.China Insurance Co. (Singapore) Pte. Ltd
.Manulife (Singapore) Pte Ltd
.MSIG Insurance (Singapore) Pte Ltd
.Partner Reinsurance Co Ltd, Singapore Branch
.R + V Versicherung AG, Singapore Branch
.Sime Insurance Brokers (Singapore) Pte Ltd
.Singapore Aviation and General Insurance Co (Pte) Ltd
.Singapore Reinsurance Corporation Limited
.TM Asia Insurance Singapore Ltd.
.TM Asia Life Singapore Ltd.

Australian based insurance company, QBE, has two correspondent offices in Burma.

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