Thursday, 11 July 2019

Questions (220)

Michael McGrath


220. Deputy Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Finance the progress the CSO is making in compiling a price index for public liability and employer liability; his views on whether such an index will be created; when such an index will be up and running; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [31436/19]

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Written answers (Question to Finance)

Increasing the availability of data in relation to Employer and Public Liability Insurance is a matter which was discussed by the Cost of Insurance Working Group in its Report on the Cost of Employer and Public Liability Insurance (2018).  It recommended a number of actions to improve transparency in this area.  Amongst these, Recommendation 1 requires the Central Statistics Office (CSO) to consider the feasibility of collecting price information on the cost of insurance to businesses, and if it considers such an index feasible to make appropriate proposals. 

The Deputy will be aware that the CSO submitted a draft report to the Department of Finance in December 2018 on the work undertaken on the feasibility study to date. It subsequently provided a final report to the CIWG in January 2019.  In this report, the CSO outlined the method that they would recommend for the compilation of a price index for public and employer liability insurance.  I understand that this method is currently being piloted by the CSO and that good progress has been made.  In this context, the CSO is working closely with a technology partner and has had positive engagement to date from most of the relevant insurance companies.  I understand from the CSO that the pilot project will conclude at the end of September.

In that context, I would expect that it will make a report to the CIWG in relation to its recommendation on a path forward.  It should be noted however that the CSO is an independent Office and it will ultimately be for them to determine whether or not to proceed with such an index.