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The Value of RiskSwiss Re and the History of Reinsurance$
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Harold James, Peter Borscheid, David Gugerli, and Tobias Straumann

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199689804

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199689804.001.0001

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(p.88) Chapter 4 Division
The Value of Risk

Harold James

Peter Borscheid

David Gugerli

Tobias Straumann

Oxford University Press

The end of the Second World War was another major turning point in the global insurance industry. Not only communist countries but also former colonies were restricting the activities of foreign companies. Asian countries such as South Korea and Taiwan, and even Australia, protected their own insurance markets against foreign competition, while at the same time fostering local development. While the Bretton Woods system operated, restrictions on the transfer of international capital had prevented many insurers from operating outside their own countries. For a long time afterwards, insurers were confronted by obstacles that they were powerless to overcome—xenophobia, products tailored to specific countries, special distribution organizations and restrictions placed on majority control of domestic companies by foreigners. Only reinsurers managed to keep operating on a more or less global scale, thereby compensating for the lack of international risk distribution brought about by insurers concentrating on their home markets.

Keywords:   state control, Bretton Woods, nationalization, reinsurer's global business

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