GPI Holding Protects from Natural Disasters

Georgian drivers now have an opportunity to insure their cars from natural disasters. The initiative belongs to GPI Holding insurance company and is being carried out in the framework of a social responsibility program, free of charge. The insurance package is available from August 3, 2015.

According to representatives of GPI Holding, the new insurance includes flood, storm, landslide, heavy snowfall, earthquake and downpour. The idea of creating this service appeared after the tragic floods in Tbilisi on June 13 when the city suffered serious losses.

Recent studies have shown that the June losses amounted to 200 million Lari, while insurance companies of Georgia reimbursed only 4,239,722 Lari. “It is not because we do not want to pay more, just that it turned out only 20-30% of the affected cars were insured. And until now, authorities still are discussing the fate of the uninsured cars,”noted Paata Lomidze, Director of GPI Holding.

Unfortunately, Georgia is located in a geographical area in which the probability of natural disasters is high. Based on international practice, heads of states always call to include those disasters that are most likely to occur in the country in compulsory insurance.

According to the statistics of the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources Protection of Georgia, there were about 34 cases of storms in the country with a loss of 14.8 million USD during the last five years. Floods occurred 89 times and brought damage amounting to 224 million USD. Landslides are the most frequent cases of natural disasters in Georgia, having occurred 1729 times in the last five years to a loss of 298.5 million USD.

According to ACT, a leading research and strategic consulting company in Caucasus region, one of the main reasons why people do not purchase insurance is a lack of information about insurance offers (47%) and the high price (23%). This was one of the reasons for creating a new insurance package, which now protects drivers from natural disasters free of charge.

Lomidze said that free insurance from natural disasters will help to avoid major expenses and it recalls the benefits and privileges of insurance itself. “We want insurance to become a habit, so for this point, first of all, it should be available,” he said.

“You just have to come to GPI Holding’s office and ask for this insurance. You do not have to pay anything. Nevertheless, if you want additional insurance services, then you have to buy a separate package,” he added.

GPI Holding is the first and only insurance companies in Georgia to provide this kind of service. This insurance package already has its first customers. The company noted that the package would be valid until the end of the year. Lomidze claims that at this stage, it is important to give full information to people about this service and if it will be demanded, GPI Holding may continue it next year.

“Currently there are 960,000 registered cars in Georgia, and only 51, 782 are insured. When we were creating our new package, we have taken into account all the risks. And we want to say that we are willing to serve all these cars in the framework of this program. Of course, I doubt that the owners of 960,000 cars will come to us, but if so, we are ready for this,”said Lomidze.

Eka Karsaulidze

20 August 2015 19:54