Press Conference by SUZUKI Shunichi, Minister of Finance and Minister of State for Financial Services
(Tuesday, July 25, 2023, ５:29 pm to ５:44 pm)
Let me ask two questions about matters related to the Financial Services Agency (FSA). It turns out that Sompo Japan has lent some of its employees, 37 in total, to BIGMOTOR. There are doubts as to why there were so many seconded employees and that no fraudulent practice has been detected. In any event, some news media have reported that the FSA is collecting facts to find what they really did, keeping in mind issuance of an order for the submission of a report under the Insurance Business Act. I would like to ask you about the facts and your own opinion regarding the case. This is the first question. The second question is about a structural problem. In the first place, there was what might be called interdependence between the non-life insurers and BIGMOTOR. They introduced BIGMOTOR, as a repair shop, to drivers of cars damaged in an accident while, in return, they secured new customers, as an insurance agent, through BIGMOTOR. Some point out the relationship between them, an insurer and its agent, itself constitutes collusion. Is their relationship appropriate? Would you let us know what you think of that?
First, I consider the string of acts BIGMOTOR allegedly engaged in, under fact-finding at the moment, to be really deplorable.
The FSA has started inquiries with non-life insurers who have delegated BIGMOTOR to sell their policies, so as to determine all the facts.
You have pointed out, I understand, there are some media reports that several major non-life insurers have lent their employees to BIGMOTOR, and they have introduced BIGMOTOR to car owners. First, we have confirmed that several major non-life insurers have lent some of their employees to BIGMOTOR. The FSA intends to examine what roles the seconded employees had and what relationship between BIGMOTOR and each of the insurers was, so as to confirm all the facts. If any act lacking in policyholder protection is found, against not only BIGMOTOR but also insurers who delegated the company to sell their policies, we will take strict measures based on laws and regulations.
You have also pointed out media reports that the non-life insurers introduced BIGMOTOR, as a repair shop, to their policyholders. The FSA has also noticed the issue. We are working to determine all the facts, including those about insurers I have mentioned. We will take strict measures based on laws and regulations, if anything lacking in policyholder protection is found, against not only BIGMOTOR but also insurers who delegated the company to sell their policies. In any event, we have started collecting facts to determine all the facts, and are working for that.
Regarding the fact that BIGMOTOR and insurers mutually introduce their customers, what do you think of the relationship itself?
For the issue, I suppose, we must determine all the facts, before making any judgment strictly according to laws and regulations.
If that was the case, do you think any remedial action will be needed?
If that was the case, what is important is, I believe, what action we should take according to laws and regulations. First, we must carefully determine all the facts.
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