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IAIS limits stakeholder participation against NAIC objections

WASHINGTON, D.C. (Oct. 27, 2014) -At the International Association of Insurance Supervisors (IAIS) Annual General Meeting on October 25, members voted on observer membership status for non-member stakeholders. The vote, which took place in closed session, amended IAIS bylaws to end the observer membership status, which included participation in some IAIS meetings, in favor of creating new stakeholder consultation procedures.

"I am extremely disappointed in the outcome of Saturday's vote to end observer status at the IAIS," said Adam Hamm, NAIC President and North Dakota Insurance Commissioner. "Observers run the range of consumer advocates, insurance experts, and industry representatives - all of whom have critical input to share on the real-world consequences of decisions made by regulators. Shutting them out of the official process in favor of 'invite only' participation deprives IAIS members and stakeholders alike and could diminish the credibility of decisions made at the IAIS."

The new consultation procedures being developed will likely outline how certain stakeholders may participate in portions of some meetings by invitation only as well as the creation of open hearings with stakeholders separate from IAIS meetings. The NAIC delegation was united in its strong opposition to the measure to close meetings to stakeholders.

"Over the years, the IAIS has benefitted from the input and ideas provided by our observers which not only result in quality end products, but also provide our stakeholders with a better understanding of our work and our development processes," said Kevin McCarty, Florida Insurance Commissioner, who serves on the IAIS Executive Committee. "U.S. state regulators have pushed for more transparency and openness within the IAIS over the years, and therefore we are concerned about changes which will result in less transparency and openness by closing all meetings to stakeholders going forward."

U.S. state regulators are not alone in their concern with the new process. Congress has introduced a bipartisan resolution calling for openness and transparency by the IAIS.

"At the end of the day, any global insurance standards that are enacted will have a direct impact on consumers and our markets and so they deserve a seat at the table," said Monica Lindeen, NAIC President-Elect and Commissioner of the Montana Office of Securities and Insurance.

About the NAIC

The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) is the U.S. standard-setting and regulatory support organization created and governed by the chief insurance regulators from the 50 states, the District of Columbia and five U.S. territories. Through the NAIC, state insurance regulators establish standards and best practices, conduct peer review, and coordinate their regulatory oversight. NAIC staff supports these efforts and represents the collective views of state regulators domestically and internationally. NAIC members, together with the central resources of the NAIC, form the national system of state-based insurance regulation in the U.S. For more information, visit

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