Australian government initiatives encourage foreign insurers to offer more cover in North Queensland may cause confusion moving forward.

Following a series of destructive cyclones and floods in the region, the cost of home, contents and property insurance has rocketed.  So, in May 2014, the Minister for Finance produced a discussion paper to canvass policy options to address the issue covering risk reduction, more capacity and enabling buyers to compare prices and products.

The result is a number of Government initiatives that have been suggested, including allowing licensed brokers to sell insurance policies from foreign insurers where they offer consumers a better price. This is despite current Australian law which requires foreign insurers to be authorised by the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority if they carry on insurance business in Australia (which includes using an Australian broker).

It will be interesting to see how the contradictions between the law and the initiatives will be reconciled.