Canadian Underwriter

Report finds mounting global risks

January 10, 2007   by Canadian Underwriter

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A disconnect continues to grow between the power of global risks to cause major systemic disruption and our ability to mitigate them, according to the Global Risks 2007 report released by the World Economic Forum (WEF).
The report, published by the WEF, in cooperation with Citigroup, Marsh & McLennan Companies, Swiss Re and the Wharton School Risk Center, made recommendations to strengthen mitigation strategies, says a WEF press release.
The appointment of “country risk officers” and the creation of flexible “coalitions of the willing” around specific global risk issues were among the top recommendations.
In addition, the report recommends a number of key needs for addressing global risks.
These include: linking energy security with considerations on climate change; renewing terrorism insurance schemes; and increasing research into the identification of “critical choke-points in the supply/value chain” in the case of a pandemic.
Jacques Aigrain, CEO of Swiss Re, commented that many of the global risks are tightly interwoven.
“To address our contemporary risk landscape, governments and enterprises need to take a holistic approach,” Aigrain said in a statement.
Mike Cherasky, president and CEO of Marsh & McLennan Companies, stressed the importance of not only reacting to catastrophic events, but also on utilizing effective enterprise risk management to set priorities, increase business focus and allocate resources.
“Catastrophic natural disasters in recent years have demonstrated that our ability to confront emerging risks depends more on the choices we make before a disruption than the actions we take during a crisis,” Cherasky said in a statement.

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