Transporters on Extended RCA Price Caps: It’s Deceptive!

UNSAR: Extending the cap on RCA premiums is not a "miracle drug".

The Confederation of Car Transporters (COTAR) asked the Government on Wednesday to reject the extension of the capping of RCA tariffs proposed by the Ministry of Finance, if it is not done at the reference tariff displayed by the Financial Supervision Authority (ASF).

“Although it has been seen that the prices increase regardless of the capping, the insurance companies will have the opportunity to double the prices at the end of the so-called capping period, under the pretext that until then there were no tariff increases”, claim the carriers.

The transporters’ confederation, which also brings together taxi companies and car services, believes that “any price ceiling imposed by the authorities – but not at the reference rate calculated and displayed on the ASF website, does not help anyone, being only to it gives the impression that the executive has intervened in the insurance market, to protect the Romanians” and that “what will happen after this period will be a disaster”.

“Although it seems like a help offered to Romanians, in fact, such a measure does not create any real benefit for insurance consumers in Romania, something that was evident during the period when the so-called capping was applicable, when the RCA rates charged by insurers increased by tens of percent compared to previous rates. ASF watched helplessly at these increases. What’s more, at the end of January, insurers found a way to get as close as possible to the value of the reference rate, for vehicles over 16t, by following the numbers in the famous calculation formula. Thus, instead of paying rates of 15,000-17,000 lei for B1-B8, we pay around 9,500 lei. From March last year, until February this year, over the government’s capping decision, the insurers collected those fabulous amounts from us, and for individuals, during the capping period, the tariffs increased by 8-10%”, complain the transporters.

The Ministry of Finance has proposed the extension of the cap on RCA rates until June 30, 2024, in the context where there are still unresolved problems in the car insurance market, which translate into an imbalance between demand and supply, Minister Marcel Boloş announced.

I have transparently published a proposal to extend the ceiling of RCA tariffs until June 30, 2024. This is because on March 31 the extension adopted at the end of 2023 expires, when we proposed to keep as reference prices for RCA policies the values from February 28, 2023, allowing a policy adjustment of 6.8% (equivalent to the forecasted inflation rate). It is a temporary solution, in the context in which there are still unresolved problems in the car insurance market, which translate into a market characterized by an imbalance between demand and supply”, the minister announced on his Facebook page.

The reference rate at RCA is not the selling price practiced by insurance companies, but is only indicative, being calculated for class B0 and for a period of 12 months.

The tariff was calculated by the audit firm KPMG, following a purchase contract initiated by the Financial Supervisory Authority (ASF), based on historical data from the last 5 years prior to the reference date, i.e. the period January 1, 2018-December 31, 2022.

This means that the bankruptcy of Euroins and the RCA price cap, which is in place until the end of this year, have not been taken into account.

UNSAR also slams RCA cap extension

The insurance industry took note with deep concern of the authorities’ desire to extend for the 3rd time the capping period of RCA premiums, by another 3 months, until June 30, 2024, without even taking into account the effects of inflation.
UNSAR – The National Union of Insurance and Reinsurance Companies from Romania says that the average RCA claim increased in the third quarter of last year even more than inflation, by about 12%, because compensations were not capped either.
Besides the fact that capping RCA premiums is a flagrant violation of the rules of the European Union, of which Romania is also a part, the fact that the price of RCA policies is influenced by the large number of accidents, the compensations paid and the rising costs is always omitted. For example, insurers pay increased taxes and contributions for RCA, from 6.6% in 2021, to around 13% in 2023. Insurers who did not take into account these fundamental economic principles are, moreover, also those who went bankrupt in the past.
The measure to extend the ceiling overlaps with the discussions regarding the amendment of Law 132/2017 on RCA, where the proposals of the insurance industry to ensure the sustainability of the profile market were not taken into account. Practically, certain operating principles and technical aspects intended to correct at least in part a series of market imbalances, which the industry has constantly signaled in the last 5 years, are not included among the changes to the RCA Law, despite the fact that they are wanted including by Romanian drivers. As I said both at the time of the first extension of the RCA policy rate freeze, in March of last year, as well as on the occasion of the other extensions, these “temporary” measures, besides the fact that they are contrary to Community legislation, are far from being a “wonder drug”. On the contrary, it could lead again to the results we witnessed following the capping in 2016,” UNSAR said in a press release.
cappingConfederation of Car TransportersCOTARextensiongovernmentRCAtariffstransporters
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  • Panagiotis Spyridis

    Shouldn’t diesel consumer prices be cheaper than benzine?