The Solvency II directive sets out new and stronger EU-wide requirements on capital adequacy and risk management for insurers, with the aim of increasing protection for policyholders. The strengthened regime should reduce the possibility of consumer loss or market disruption in insurance.
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In light of bifurcation discussions in Europe, the Solvency II directive will go live for supervisors and the European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority (EIOPA) on 30 June 2013 (i.e. transposition of the directive will be complete by this point). Solvency II will be adopted by all 27 European Union (EU) Member States plus three of the European Economic Area (EEA) countries. As a consistent European standard, Solvency II should help to protect policyholders' interests more effectively by making firm failure less likely, and by reducing the probability of consumer loss or market disruption. It should also make it easier for firms to do business across the EU, as the current patchwork of varying local standards, established to supplement Solvency I, will be replaced by more consistent requirements.