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TALKS HELD ON EXPANDING INSURANCE AVAILABILITY

Aug. 14, 2003 – Lt. Gov. Vargrave Richards in his capacity as Insurance commissioner and Deverita Sturdivant, Insurance Division director, were in Puerto Rico on Wednesday for discussions about the possibility of Puerto Rican insurance companies underwriting property and casualty coverage for Virgin Islands homeowners.
According to a release from the Lieutenant Governor's Office, the two met with P.R. Insurance Commissioner Fermin Contreras and "industry leaders" with the objective of building on the territory's relationship with Puerto Rican insurance companies that "have been doing business in the territory for many, many years."
Virgin Islanders "must be able to acquire insurance to meet individual and unique needs," Richards said, and this can be accomplished by expanding the industry locally. He said he is committed to implementing "an aggressive marketing strategy aimed at luring potential companies with a wide variety of services to the territory."
Toward that end, he added, he is open to meeting with "reputable companies who seek to expand their markets to the territory through insurance services and products that meet Virgin Islanders' needs with the highest return at the most affordable costs."
Expanding the capacity for more companies to underwrite property and casualty insurance in the territory will stimulate competition and thereby "stabilize and possibly even reduce rates in the territory," he said.

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