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Higher premiums and another AMI bailout

Higher premiums and another AMI bailout

Insurance premiums will rise for farmers and businesses and taxpayers could end up on the hook for another AMI bailout when ACC workplace coverage is privatised, Progressive Wigram MP Jim Anderton says.

"An independent report by PriceWaterhouseCoopers in Sydney in 2008 showed that ACC costs in New Zealand, at around 0.8% of wages are substantially lower than the Australian average of 2% of wages.

"ACC costs for farmers are much lower in New Zealand than in Australia.

"There will be little to stop those same Australian insurance companies coming over here and underfunding their liabilities, which is what happened in 1998, when HIH went under with billions of dollars of liabilities that had to be picked up by taxpayers.

"In New Zealand, taxpayers are today on the hook for up to a billion dollars because AMI didn’t carry enough reinsurance, and regulators never warned of a problem. Why would workplace insurance be any different?”

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