Insurance companies should avoid unnecessary overseas travel by their employees to reduce the possibility of imported cases of COVID-19, the Financial Supervisory Commission’s (FSC) Insurance Bureau said yesterday.
The bureau on Sunday urged local life insurance and property insurance companies to prohibit their staff from unnecessary travel abroad and required companies to report to the bureau any travel-related activities, Insurance Bureau Deputy Director-General Wang Li-hui (王麗惠) said by telephone.
Chairs or general managers of insurance companies are required to report to the bureau in advance before starting business trips, with details including itineraries, anti-virus measures and others on the trips, Wang said.
Companies should make sure that family members or others who live with a staff member who travels overseas knows that the employee would need to remain at home for 14 days to fulfill self-health management requirements after returning, she said.
“We would not fine insurance companies if they fail to comply with this guidance, as there is no law allowing a penalty, but we think that insurance companies would be happy to follow this guidance, as they would not want to jeopardize their operations due to the COVID-19 pandemic,” Wang said.
Moreover, if insurance company personnel have people they live with who want to travel, they might find it difficult to persuade them to cancel the trip, but they should report the situation to their company and make suitable arrangements, possibly including 14 days of self-quarantine, she said.
The announcement came after the nation confirmed its 54th COVID-19 case, a man in his 30s who visited Thailand and Japan and reportedly works for a foreign financial firm.
Cathay Life Insurance Co (國泰人壽) since last month has asked its staff to avoid trips to countries with a Level 3 “warning” travel notice.
The company yesterday said that it “strongly suggested” staff avoid unnecessary travel, spokesman Lin Chao-ting (林昭廷) said by telephone.
“We cannot ban them from overseas travel, as their rights are protected by the Constitution,” Lin said. “However, company management would ask for their reason for traveling and the leave would not be approved if it were deemed to be not necessary.”
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