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Best’s Commentary: Impact of Low Oil Price and COVID-19 on GCC and Russian Insurers

LONDON–(BUSINESS WIRE)–A sudden drop in oil prices in March 2020 further spooked financial markets already unsettled by the accelerating spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19). Oil prices were hit by weakened demand due to the COVID-19-related economic slowdown and excess supply.

A new AM Best commentary, “Impact of Low Oil Price and COVID-19 on GCC and Russian Insurers,” considers the likely effect of oil price volatility on the economies – and by implication, the insurance markets – of Russia and members of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC).

In general, insurers in oil-rich emerging economies have seen notable growth in gross premium revenues over the last few decades, stemming from an increase in insurable risks. However, in the face of lower oil prices and the prospect of a COVID-19-driven global recession, investment is expected to slow down considerably. As such, domestic risk carriers may no longer be able to achieve top-line premium growth at levels experienced over the past decade.

To access the full copy of this Best’s Commentary, please visit

AM Best analysts will take part in a complimentary webinar today, 7 April 2020, at 9 a.m. BST, to discuss the potential impact of the oil price drop and COVID-19 on the insurance markets in the Middle East and North Africa. To register, please visit

AM Best is a global credit rating agency, news publisher and data analytics provider specializing in the insurance industry. Headquartered in the United States, the company does business in over 100 countries with regional offices in New York, London, Amsterdam, Dubai, Hong Kong, Singapore and Mexico City. For more information, visit

Copyright © 2020 by A.M. Best Rating Services, Inc. and/or its affiliates. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.


Salman Siddiqui
Director, Analytics
+44 20 7397 0331
[email protected]

Valeria Ermakova
Senior Director, Analytics
+44 20 7397 0269
[email protected]

Richard Banks
Director, Industry Research – EMEA
+44 20 7397 0322
[email protected]

Edem Kuenyehia
Director, Market Development & Communications
+44 20 7397 0280
[email protected]


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