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Skills shortage deterring firms Back  
Global reinsurance firm Hannover Re has decided against headquartering its European operations in Ireland, due to the on-going skills shortage in the financial services sector. This is in direct contrast to Partner Re, who has just announced that it will be headquartering its European operations in Ireland, citing the quality of staff as a factor behind its decision.
One of the largest reinsurance firms in the world, Hannover Re, has said that the acute skills shortage in Ireland deterred it from relocating its headquarters to Ireland, which would have potentially brought 1,000 new jobs to the country.

When addressing the reinsurance industry’s annual conference this year, Willhelm Zeller, chief executive of Hannover Re, said that Ireland was ‘the ideal location, from a fiscal point of view,’ to relocate its headquarters because of the 12.5 per cent corporate tax rate. This incentive was not enough to entice the firm as it was felt that it would be too difficult to recruit the necessary actuaries. The decision is surprising, following on from the decisions of Partner Re and XL Re to move their headquarters to Ireland.

Partner Re, has just announced that it will be moving its European headquarters to Ireland. Costas Miranthis, CEO of the new operation, and former chief actuarial officer for Partner Re, told FINANCE that the staff on offer was one of the factors behind this decision.’Other factors for choosing Dublin include its efficient regulatory structure, quality of the staff available, its low tax rate, and the fact that it is emerging as a reinsurance centre,’ he said.

Last year, XL Re became the first major reinsurance firm to headquarter its European operations in Ireland. The Dublin operation, XL Re Europe Limited, is the centre of XL’s European reinsurance business, and has branch offices in the UK, France, Spain and Germany.

Hannover Re (Ireland), is Hannover Re’s current Irish operation. It runs its Dublin office out of Custom House Plaza and employs 22 staff, while its headquarters in Germany currently employs around 1,000 people.

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