U.S. Travel Supports New Pandemic Insurance Bill

Rep. Carolyn Maloney has called for the creation of a federal Pandemic Risk Reinsurance Program to compensate for business-interruption losses.

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The U.S. Travel Association has backed a bill introduced yesterday by Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.) that calls for the creation of the Pandemic Risk Reinsurance Program, a system of shared public and private compensation for business-interruption losses resulting from future pandemics or public health emergencies.

Following the introduction of the bill, U.S. Travel said the measure would go “a long way in giving businesses the confidence they need to reopen, which will be vital to a rapid, robust and sustained economic recovery.

“We are really happy to work with Congresswoman Maloney and her staff to ensure that this bill works for the entirety of the travel industry, including the very, very hard-hit meetings and events sector,” said U.S. Travel executive vice president for public affairs and policy Tori Emerson Barnes. “Among the most critical provisions are the inclusion of event cancellation, insurance and provisions. and ensuring policy holders don't see a huge spike in their premiums.”

“9/11 exposed the need for terrorism risk insurance, and since the impact of coronavirus on the travel industry has been nine times that of 9/11, it is very sensible to offer a similar backstop for pandemics,” added Barnes. “The PRIA legislation is a critical step in building the policy framework to navigate out of the economic crisis that has resulted from the pandemic and help ensure it never happens again.”