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APRA disqualifies former New Cap Reinsurance Australia officer

29 Aug 2007

The Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) today announced the disqualification of Mr Paul Williams from being or acting as a director or senior manager of a general insurer or authorised non-operating holding company, or a senior manager or agent in Australia of a foreign general insurer.

Mr Williams was the deputy managing director of New Cap Reinsurance Australia (NCRA) from October 1996 to May 1999.

APRA found that Mr Williams:

  • led negotiations with General Cologne Re, a parent company of General Reinsurance Australia to put in place a financial reinsurance arrangement which enabled NCRA to improve its reported profit for 1998 by approximately US$5.7 million;
  • failed to disclose the true purpose of this arrangement to NCRA’s auditors, external actuaries, bank and APRA; and
  • was aware that the arrangement was not appropriately accounted for in NCRA’s 1998 accounts, in contravention of Australian and US accounting standards and the Insurance and Superannuation Commission’s (now APRA) Circular G3 of 1994.

In 2005, APRA commenced an investigation into alternative reinsurance transactions negotiated and entered into by General Reinsurance Australia. The above transaction was identified during the course of this investigation.

A copy of the Inspector’s Report for General Reinsurance Australia released on 28 June 2007 is available on APRA’s website.  Click here for more details.

APRA continues to consider the fitness and propriety of other individuals involved in this and other alternative reinsurance transactions.

The disqualification of Mr Williams is listed on APRA’s disqualification register on APRA's website.  Click here for more details.

The Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) is the prudential regulator of the financial services industry. It oversees banks, credit unions, building societies, general insurance and reinsurance companies, life insurance, friendly societies, and most members of the superannuation industry. APRA is funded largely by the industries that it supervises. It was established on 1 July 1998. APRA currently supervises institutions holding approximately $2.5 trillion in assets for 20 million Australian depositors, policyholders and superannuation fund members.