By Anthony Marcus, for Eurasia Business News – May 20, 2022

View on a business and office building in Moscow, near the financial center “Moskva City”.
Photo credit : Swann Collins, January 2022

The Swiss insurance company Zurich Insurance Group winds down its business in Russia and sells 100% of the shares of JSC Insurance company Zurich (Zurich Russia) to a team of 11 Russian employees.

Zurich Insurance Group has agreed to sell its business in Russia to 11 members of the division’s team. With the new owners, the company will work independently under a different brand, and Zurich will no longer conduct business in Russia“, announced the Zurich Insurance Group in a press release. The sale of JSC IC Zurich is subject to coordination with the relevant regulatory authorities.

The transaction will allow the new company to retain a professional team with accumulated insurance expertise and to continue serving the Russian market, commented Zurich Insurance Group.

The sale of Joint Stock Company Insurance Company “Zurich” (Zurich Russia) is subject to approval of the relevant Russian regulatory authorities.

Zurich Russia is a property and casualty insurer with about 0.3% of the Russian non-life insurance market. Its main business has been supporting the activities in Russia of Zurich’s international customers.

In 2021, Zurich Russia had gross written premiums of approximately USD 34 million, including USD 3 million from domestic customers.

Zurich Russia is a property and casualty insurance company. It accounts for about 0.3% of the Russian insurance market, not counting life insurance.

On February 24, the US Treasury imposed sanctions on a number of major Russian banks, including Sberbank, VTB, Promsvyazbank, Novikombank, Sovcombank, and other credit institutions and companies in the financial sector.

Read also : US President Joe Biden announced new sanctions against Russia

Read also : European states agreed to impose new sanctions on Russia

Russia launched a military operation in the morning of February 24, with the official goal to “demilitarize Ukraine”, remove the Ukrainian government and protect the rights of Russians living in Donbass, Eastern Ukraine, a region hit by the war since 2014. In a televised address to Russian citizens, President Vladimir Putin stated that circumstances “require decisive and immediate action from us, the people’s republics of Donbass  have asked for help.” 

The Kremlin continues voicing that Moscow’s plans do not include the occupation of Ukrainian territories. The Russian goals would be “demilitarization and denazification” of the country. Moscow also wants Ukraine to return to its neutral status, which was enshrined in the Ukrainian Constitution until 2014 and to offer guarantee of not holding on its territory nuclear weapons.

Read also : How will Russia respond to Western sanctions ?

Ukraine and its Western partners sees the Russian military operation as an invasion and imposed strong strong sanctions against Russian state officials, banks, companies and oligarchs, to put pressure on the Russian government and lead it to a ceasefire and a withdrawal from Ukraine.

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