The largest insured losses of 2009 occurred in the U.S. and Europe, but the developing world continued to suffer billions in uninsured economic losses, according to a recently released study.
August’s Typhoon Morakot that swept through Asia destroyed 3.9 million structures and produced economic losses of over $5 billion, but insured losses only amounted to $100 million, according to Aon’s 2009 Global Climate and Catastrophe Report.
Separately, September 30th’s magnitude 7.6 earthquake in West Sumatra damaged or destroyed over 249,800 structures in Indonesia causing economic losses of $2.2 billion.
“However, due to the low take-up rate on earthquake insurance across the region, insured losses were estimated at only $40 million by the Indonesian provincial governments, less than two percent of the economic loss total,” the report said.
Indonesian governmental agencies estimated that reconstruction costs would be around $860 million.
According to Aon, Europe and the United States tallied the most insured losses for 2009 primarily due to damaging winter and springtime weather. The largest insured loss of 2008 was Winterstorm Klaus, which caused an estimated $3.3 billion in insured losses.
Asia, however, accounted for most of the economic losses of 2009, with flooding and
typhoons accounting for the majority of their losses, the report said.
“Low insurance takeup rates in developing nations lead to large economic loss events but relatively low insured losses,” the Aon report added.