Recent flooding in Chennai will cost India’s economy an estimated $3 billion in losses, making it the worst disaster of its kind this year in terms of damage to the economy, according to U.K. reinsurance broker Aon Benfield.
In its monthly report on global catastrophes, the broker estimated nearly 400 people died after rainfall lashed India’s southern coast and parts of Sri Lanka late November and earlier this month, and more than 100,000 structures were damaged as a result of inundation across the two nations.
India’s state insurer expects claims worth $300 million, Aon said separately.
Dozens of schools, factories and offices shut as a result of the rains that caused local rivers to overflow their banks.
Aon’s research shows the expected $3 billion loss to India’s economy is the most damage floodwaters will have caused anywhere in the world in 2015. The second-most devastating floods — in China in June — are estimated to have cost its economy $2 billion, and deluges in the southeast of the U.S. in October amounted to the same.
Overall, the Chennai flooding was the eighth-most expensive natural disaster this year. Wildfires in Indonesia in January cost the Southeast Asian economy $14 billion, making it the most costly natural disaster of 2015.