Wilkinson Liberals
(BC Liberals)

The BC Liberal party pledged to open up the province to privatized auto insurance if elected, ending ICBC’s monopoly.

Leader Andrew Wilkinson accused the crown corporation of driving up rates under John Horgan’s NDP minority, saying that rates had ballooned by an average of 48 per cent over the last three years.

“BC drivers are tired of being gouged by John Horgan, ICBC, and the NDP,” Wilkinson said at a campaign stop in Maple Ridge Tuesday morning.

“The way to get cheaper rates is to introduce competition for all forms of auto insurance in British Columbia.”

The BC Liberals say their government would allow privatized coverage through a tort system (where disputing parties determine fault) or through ICBC’s no-fault system.

They also pledged to offer new drivers credit for two years of driving experience, increasing to four years if the driver has completed driver education.

Wilkinson also slammed the BC NDP promise to return ICBC profits to drivers that were earned during the COVID-19 pandemic, saying that the move should have come months ago.

The Liberals pledged to return excessive premiums charged by ICBC during 2020.

“Everywhere else in Canada, there were refunds from insurance in the summer time, but not in BC,” said Wilkinson. “Our position is that you are entitled to that money.”

When asked by Victoria Buzz how a Liberal government would compensate for the loss of revenue to government coffers with a privatized model, leader Andrew Wilkinson evaded the question, talking instead about how the competition would offer customers choice.