A mixed bag The European insurance market is a mixed bag. The numbers tell a story. As of 2009, Liechtenstein employed as few as 507 workers in the insurance industry, while at the other end of the scale, Germany employed about 216,500. The difference is also reflected in the number of supervised undertakings subject to Solvency II – between 10 and 625, according to the QIS5 report, with the number of supervisory staff working on Solvency II ranging between 25 to over 3,300. Member states also began their Solvency II journey from different starting points. Some have already got a form of risk-based regulations in place while others are only beginning to grapple with the concept and its technical and staffing implications. Its like a marathon. Some start at the front, others at the back – all with different levels of fitness and ability. All moving towards the same goal – at different speeds. Like runners, national regulators disperse along the course, they will all make it in the end (we hope) but for now there are leaders and laggers.