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New accident scheme a financial winner

News release 16 July 1999

Release From Wellington Chamber Of Commerce

An overwhelming number of Wellington businesses are financially better off as a result of the new accident insurance system.

A survey among Wellington Regional Chamber of Commerce members has found that 84% of respondents’ premium rates for accident insurance have decreased.

The Chamber asked 800 of its members to complete a detailed questionnaire on the effect of the change from compulsory, state-provided accident compensation to competitive public or private provision of accident insurance.

“Businesses have jumped at the chance to get more meaningful policies and cut their premiums,” Chamber of Commerce chief executive, Claire Johnstone said.

“While most businesses, 84%, have had some sort of reduction, almost a third have had their premiums cut in half or more. Only 16% are having a higher rate.

“It’s turning out to be another example of how the Government can get out of doing of business, and leave the business community to carry out normal commercial activities. It is long overdue. Most companies are small, or small-to-medium-sized businesses and should not have had to carry such costs for so long.”

In the survey the companies, most of which have been in business for over 10 years, reported that in the main they had kept their insurance cover at the same levels as before.

Although generally satisfied with the new arrangements, some companies questioned the ability of the insurance companies entering the accident insurance marketplace to deal with its complexity, but were prepared to give them time to prove themselves.

A number also said they were not looking forward to another proposed change to the system, if a Labour Government was elected.

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