(Reuters) – French insurance companies have pledged to refrain from raising premiums next year on companies in the sectors hardest hit by the coronavirus outbreak, French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire said on Monday.
Under pressure from Le Le Maire, insurance companies faced the prospect of suffering a tax of 1.2 billion euros if they did not offer to keep premiums stable next year.
Mr. Le Maire, who had been worried that some insurers were preparing to raise premiums, said the freeze would benefit hotels, restaurants and bars, as well as companies in the tourism, sports, culture and events industries.
"We hope that this constructive, useful and effective agreement will end the conflict situation and provide solidarity in the sector," Le Maire said after a meeting with heads of the insurance industry.
Mr Le Maire has repeatedly collided this year with the insurance industry, which he has said did not do enough to alleviate the pain of companies struggling to cope with the fallout from the coronavirus outbreak.
Last week, the Senate introduced an amendment to the 2021
Mr Le Maire said at the time that if insurers did not commit to freezing premiums by Monday, the lower house's parliament, where the government party has a majority, would go with the tax.  Axa France's CEO Jacques de Peretti announced at the Senate's tax change and told the newspaper Le Parisien that "d It is scandalous to face such blackmail. "
Earlier this month, Axa warned of a hit in the 2020 results as a result of the pandemic, which has led to it making payments. to customers including for interrupted events.
More insurance and risk management news about the coronavirus crisis here.