What the ACCC does

  • We monitor certain insurance products to evaluate the impact of the government’s reinsurance pool for cyclone and related flood damage.
  • We collect data to monitor the prices, costs and profits of this type of insurance cover and provide at least one report each calendar year.

What the ACCC can't do

  • We don’t regulate insurance prices.
  • We don’t operate the cyclone reinsurance pool.

On this page

About the cyclone reinsurance pool

Purpose of the reinsurance pool

Insurers take out reinsurance to protect them from significant natural peril events, such as cyclones, that impact their portfolios.

The government has created a cyclone and related flood damage reinsurance pool.

The pool provides reinsurance to insurers for cyclones and cyclone-related flooding risks throughout Australia. It applies to home, contents, residential strata and small business insurance cover, up to an insured sum of $5 million.

The pool seeks to reduce the cost of reinsurance for insurers to:

  • enable delivery of lower premiums to consumers
  • promote competition by encouraging more insurers to participate in northern Australian, and other cyclone-risk, regions.

The pool was started to help make insurance more affordable for households and some small businesses who are at high risk of cyclones.

Who administers the reinsurance pool

The Australian Reinsurance Pool Corporation administers the reinsurance pool and supplies reinsurance to insurers.

Reinsurance is priced at the property level and is designed to direct greater savings towards higher cyclone risk properties.

The Australian Reinsurance Pool Corporation does not operate for profit.

Read more about the design and operation of the cyclone reinsurance pool on the Australian Reinsurance Pool Corporation website.

Insurers covered by the pool

The list of insurers covered by the cyclone pool is on the Australian Reinsurance Pool Corporation website.

Large insurers must join the pool by 31 December 2023 and small insurers by 31 December 2024. The first insurers joined the pool in early 2023.

Insurance monitoring reports

The ACCC has been directed to monitor the prices, costs, and profits of home, contents, strata, and certain commercial insurance policies, before and after the cyclone reinsurance pool was introduced.

We collect data and information from insurers to:

  • evaluate the impact of the cyclone reinsurance pool
  • assess whether savings are passed through to policy holders.

We are required to provide a report on our monitoring at least once each calendar year from 1 January 2022 to 30 June 2026.

See the terms of reference at Competition and Consumer (Price Monitoring—General Insurance Policies) Direction 2022.

Current monitoring report

Previous monitoring reports

See Insurance monitoring reports for a complete list of reports we have published.

Role of government agencies in insurance

Our role in insurance

The ACCC has a limited direct role in general insurance.

Insurance is mainly regulated by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission and the Australian Prudential Australian Prudential Regulation Authority.

At times, we are directed by government to take on a specific role that is insurance related. This is currently the case with the insurance monitoring direction and our concluded Northern Australia Insurance Inquiry, which made 38 wide-ranging recommendations.

We do not have a price setting power for insurance, or for products generally. However, we do have general competition law oversight over financial services.

The roles of other government agencies

Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) is responsible for licensing and regulating insurers. It can take action against insurers who fail to comply with the financial services laws, including when insurers are being misleading or deceptive or acting unconscionably. ASIC’s MoneySmart website has information for consumers about home insurance.

Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) is the prudential regulator for insurance. It is responsible for making sure insurers can pay all policy holder obligations. 

Australian Reinsurance Pool Corporation (ARPC) is a public financial corporation and Treasury portfolio agency. It was first established in 2003 to provide terrorism risk reinsurance. From 1 July 2022, it began operating the cyclone reinsurance pool under the Terrorism and Cyclone Insurance Act 2003.

The legal basis of our work

The ACCC functions in relation to price inquiries and price monitoring are set out in part VIIA of the Competition and Consumer Act 2010.

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