Swiss Re has joined forces with Chinese technology company Baidu to focus on the autonomous driving industry.

The tie-up is aimed at developing the autonomous driving industry by creating new insurance products and providing risk management expertise.

It seeks to further risk management research and insurance protection for autonomous vehicles.

Swiss Re CEO reinsurance Asia & regional president Asia Russell Higginbotham said: “Our partnership with Baidu is a milestone in Swiss Re’s efforts to access new risk pools and close the protection gap through Swiss Re’s risk management expertise and innovation capabilities.

“By combining our respective risk knowledge and insights, we hope to jointly explore and develop innovative products and solutions, catalyse the transformation of the autonomous driving value chain and further advance the mobility ecosystem.”

Initially, the firms plan to launch an autonomous valet parking insurance.

Down the line, they plan to expand their partnership to cover risk management research and insurance for autonomous driving computing platforms, intelligent cockpits, robotaxi (driverless taxis) and other automated driving products.

The products will be developed to cover the entire value chain of autonomous driving, which includes the selection of risk factors, product pricing, claims and underwriting data standards.

Swiss Re head of automotive & mobility solutions Andrea Keller said: “Together with our partner Baidu, we analyse how automated cars perceive their surroundings and how they process that information and respond to it.

“Our goal is to understand how such vehicles behave differently than human-driven ones and quantify these differences. Ultimately, we aim to bring motor insurance products to the next level of innovation.”