About the company: Standard Insurance (2002) is one of the leading insurance companies of Azerbaijan. In 2007 the company changed it`s legal status becoming thus an open joint-stock company. At present, the authorized stock capital of Standard Insurance totals AZN 11 mln and the company became one of the highest authorized capital among Azerbaijan insurance companies. In 2009 the company managed to open a 100% daughter company in Georgia.
Standard Insurance has a reinsurance support Treaty program and is registered in AON’s list of reliable companies.
In 2010 company was officially appointed as a fronting partner of Zurich Insurance Group Ltd (Switzerland) for providing fronting services in Azerbaijan. In 2011 Standard Insurance became a network partner for RSA (UK) and QBE (UK) and from 2014 Standard Insurance starts broadening its cooperation with Allianz and HDI-Gerling Insurance. There are 28 types of insurance coverages including 3 types of compulsory insurance that are presented by the company.
Caspian Energy: What are your expectations for the reforms implemented by President of Azerbaijan Mr. Ilham Aliyev? What do you think about the privatization program?
Aydin Rahmanov, Chairman of the Board, Standard Insurance: No doubt, the reforms are good, important, needful and currently vital. Mr. President’s strategy is completely right and well-thought-out. The main thing is that the executive bodies fulfill everything as planned by the President. Unfortunately it is not always so. And in this case, the slightest mistake, more exactly even simple delay is unacceptable. And any idea or assignment involves a set of measures. But unfortunately, again, the executive bodies often do not see, do not notice or even worse do not know about it. And this is a failure. Of course, we, as always, hope for better. And, most importantly, the very essential thing is that all of us, regardless of a status, position and type of activity, properly and adequately fuflill our fucntions, feel our responsibility and understand our commitemnts. Good performance! That's the main thing!
With regard to privatization, I beleive there is a number of prioritised and esential areas for the state and for the people, where there should be no commercial interests.
CE: Do you think that the current level of the financial market liberalization is enough today?
Aydin Rahmanov: I believe there is no need to liberalise the financial market, but consider necessary to liberalise economy and production. By contrast, the financial market now requires a certain control. Let me just make one correction. The practice shows that all of us have our own understanding of liberalization. Therefore, this issue is something to have a very wide range of discussion on it, as well as review and analysis of the theoretical, statistical, traditional and practical components.
CE: Is Standard Insurance ready to compete with foreign companies in the domestic and international markets? What conditions are necessary for this?
Aydin Rahmanov: The domestic insurance market is developed enough to compete with foreign companies. So is Standard Insurance, of course. And the company can do it quite successful. With regard to activities on the international markets, Standard Insurance also has a good experience in this area. Our company has been working in Georgia for about 9 years and quite successful as well. But I believe that currently local insurers do not prioritise the goal to enter the international market. The main thing now is to create and maintain the favourable environment in the domestic market, to support the state and the people in the difficult times, to keep and even boost citizens' confidence in insurance, and to increase the involvement of citizens in insurance, while our head of state has been created and continues to create conditions for normal work. The main thing here is, of course, the diligentperformance!
CE: How would you assess the degree of influence of the oil crisis on the banking and insurance sectors in Azerbaijan in particular? What ways out of the crisis would you suggest?
Aydin Rahmanov: This is an obvious phenomenon, and there is nothing to comment on the fact. We must act! What we need is to analyze, study the experience, listen to the advice, look for ways to exit from the crisis! Again, the main thing is the diligentperformance!
CE: What do you think about prospects of the Azerbaija’s insurance market development this year? What indicators did you enjoy in 2015?
Aydin Rahmanov: The 2015 year ended quite well in the light of all pessimistic expectations. In particular, we expect some difficulties in 2016-2017. The insurance effect is certainly late in coming. But we do not give up. We are planning new products, expanding our geography across the country, increasing the number of insured and of course we hope to achieve a growth in volumes. We believe that in the next two years we should be as close as possible to potential policyholders and be as reliable as possible for our loyal policyholder.