Insurers 'resisting bid to lower motor cost'
Insurance companies have been accused of failing to co-operate with Government attempts to bring in measures to slow down the rapid rise in motor premiums.
Chairman of the Oireachtas Finance and Public Expenditure Committee John McGuinness claimed that rather than easing up on drivers, insurers have "hardened their attitude".
He also criticised the regulation of the sector by the Central Bank.
Mr McGuinness said drivers wanted action to cut the cost of premiums now.
The Government has produced a report with 71 action points for easing pressure on premiums.
Its committee has also come up with a range of proposals to help reverse the string of rises in the cost of cover.
The cost of motor premiums has been rising for more than two years, with hikes of up to 40pc on an annual basis last summer.
Many drivers are being hit with much higher hikes.
Mr McGuinness accused insurers of failing to co-operate with official efforts to tackle the surge in premiums.
"I have not seen any change in the attitude of insurers. The attitude from companies, I would say, has hardened. It is clear consumers are being ripped off," he told the committee, which was discussing motor insurance.
But Junior Minister Eoghan Murphy, who is spearheading a Government task-force on insurance reform, told the committee he felt insurers were co-operating with the attempts by the Government and the Oireachtas Committee to bring in measures to bring the cost of premiums down.