First Croatian Actuarial Conference was held in Zagreb under the title “The only constant is a change”

The first Croatian actuarial conference was held on 9th and 10th June 2016 in hotel Panorama Zagreb under the title “The only constant is a change”. The Conference which brought together 140 participants from home and abroad was organized by the Croatian Actuarial Association.

The Conference, which was attended by eminent domestic and foreign lecturers from the academic community and insurance experts, was held under auspices of the Croatian Ministry of Finance and the Croatian Financial Services Supervisory Agency. Partners of the Conference were Croatian Chamber of Economy and Croatian Insurance Bureau.

Opening speeches were held by the president of the Croatian Actuarial Association and Management Board member of Croatian credit insurance Mrs. Ksenija Sanjković, deputy president of Croatian Financial Services Supervisory Agency Mrs. Gordana Letica and assistant of Minister of finance and chief state treasurer Mrs. Ivana Jakir-Bajo.

“Croatian Actuarial Association during the years of its activity has continuously promoted the importance of actuarial science and profession, as well as the role of insurance in general in modern society, which are the main objectives of this Conference. The actuarial profession is becoming increasingly important, not only in insurance but also in banks, investment funds and wherever projections of future events and financial risks based on mathematical probability and statistics are needed. In particular, the actuarial profession gained importance after the recent financial crisis and raising awareness of financial risks and the need for consumer protection. ” said Mrs. Sanjković in her speech.

“Given the dynamic business environment in which we work every day, the name of the Conference – the only constant is a change – seems quite appropriate. Only constant learning and training allows progress and survival on the market. HANFA is pleased to sponsor this conference and I’m sure we will all benefit from it. ” said Mrs Letica in her speech.

Opening the conference, Ms. Ivana Jakir-Bajo in her speech referred to the possible role of actuaries in the medium term planning of government expenditures for pension and health system, emphasizing her personal opinion that the economic global crisis would not have happened if people have more listen to the actuaries.

The program of the first day of the conference included the themes associated with changes in insurance, especially life insurance, block titled “Data science” and lectures about management of longevity risk and annuity tables, and finally the Solvency II lecture.

In the first lecture, Mr. Jiri Fialka, a partner at Deloitte in the Czech Republic, spoke about the new business models based on information technology and large databases that appear in the field of insurance, that have not grown out of traditional insurance models. He also questioned the control of such business model and the competitiveness of insurance companies in relation to them.

In the panel titled “Life insurance – challenges today, the value for the future. How to create it?”, which was moderated by Mrs. Andreja Radić Blažin from the Croatian Financial Services Supervisory Agency, participants were Mr. Jiri Fialka, partner at Deloitte in the Czech Republic, Mrs. Snježana Bertoncelj, CEO of Erste osiguranje VIG d.d., Mrs. Gordana Letica, deputy president of Croatian Financial Services Supervisory Agency, Robert Vučković, member of the Board of Croatia osiguranje d.d. and Marija Kazija Krizmanić, director of actuarial department and risk management at Allianz Zagreb d.d.

The discussion mentioned the topics of digitalization and the need of insurance programs to adjust to the individual demands of the insured. Theyemphasized the need for additional creativity and innovation of insurers in circumstances of significant regulatory changes, changes on the insurance market and in a challenging economic environment.

 In the next block named “Data science”, three lectures where presenting the topics on potential of IT knowledge and technology, and large databases. In very interesting lecture, Mr. Goran Glavaš from the Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Computing has shown practical examples of the application of methods of natural language processing and machine learning. This has been followed up by Mrs. Vesna Lužar-Stiffler from CAIR Center d.o.o. who dealt with the topic of profitability of in-depth research and analysis of large databases in the financial industry.

 Mrs. Iva Matić from InCubis d.o.o emphasized the benefits of cooperation between actuaries and IT specialists in the design of an integrated information system in the insurance companies.

Professor Miljenko Huzak from Department of Mathematics presented the structure of cohort mortality tables for the Croatian population as part of the development of the first Croatian annuity tables.

He was followed by professor Ermanno Pitacco from the Economics Faculty of Trieste who talked about the importance of actuaries in risk management, with particular emphasis on the quantitative aspect.

At the end of the first day of the Conference professor Mihael Perman from the Faculty of Economics Ljubljana was speaking about the inevitable topic Solvency 2, with a critical referring on the part of the scientific basis of the Standard formula that determines the capital requirements for counterparty risk.

The second day of the Conference, two workshops were held with the topics of positive communication techniques and specific actuarial models used for pricing insurance products.

In the first workshop, Mrs. Tanja Pureta from Ramiro d.o.o.  stressed the importance of actuarial estimations for making quality decisions of management. However, to get the management to hear and understand, it is very important how information is presented. The workshop led participants through the techniques of effective communication.

In the second workshop, Mrs. Marijana Vižintin from Croatia osiguranje d.d. showed on practical examples the application of the techniques of generalized linear models in determining automobile liability premium.

The conference was closed by president of Croatian Actuarial Association Mrs. Sanjković who thanked to all the participants, speakers, partners, media sponsors, organizational and program committee, and especially the sponsors without whom the realization of this Conference wouldn’t be possible. She expressed her satisfaction with successful realization of this Conference with the hope that not everything will remain on the first only, but that this will become a traditional Conference.

Croatian Actuarial Association was established in 1996 as a nonprofit organization and this year celebrates 20 years of successful operation. Croatian Actuarial Association is a full member of the International Actuarial Association (International Actuarial Association) and the European Actuarial Association (Actuarial Association of Europe) and the organization of the first Croatian Actuarial Conference is part of marking this important anniversary.