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Insurers speed up payout to ease Urumqi riot trauma
Updated: 2009-08-12 10:04

The insurance regulator of Xinjiang has called on local insurers to speed up payouts to the victims of the Urumqi riot and grant privileges to policyholders who suffered serious losses in the deadly event, according to Xinjiang insurance authorities Monday.

In an interview with Xinhua, director Sun Jianning of the Xinjiang Bureau of the China Insurance Regulatory Commission (CIRC) said that faster payout in full amount was "conducive to social stability" and would bring families of the deceased and the injured "comfort in need".

Altogether 6.36 million yuan ($930,478) has been paid in indemnities to Urumqi riot victims as of Monday, including 1.85 million yuan for 23 life insurance claims and 4.51 million yuan for 425 damaged vehicles.

Local insurers have so far received 210 life insurance claims, but compensation for the injured and disabled must wait until qualified judicial authentication institutions fulfilled injury or disability appraisal of the insurants.

Another 20 property insurance claims have been filed, with the aggregate losses estimated at 10.89 million yuan.

Payout would be made soon as all relevant insurers have started loss-assessing, Sun said.

Calling the ongoing indemnity work "very special," the director said that the July 5 Urumqi riot which led to 197 deaths and more than 1,600 injured has left immense trauma upon the public.

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According to a guidance issued three days after the event by the industry watchdog CIRC, insurers must open telephone hotlines and provide 24-hour services for insurance claims so as to help the victims restore their production and recover from the violence as early as possible.

Not to aggravate the financial burdens of the victims, Sun said that the Xinjiang Bureau had required local insurers not to raise the premium of next year despite their payouts to insurants this year.

Current policy holders who could not afford their premium next year were also allowed to pay in installments, he said.

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