Notre Dame still stands after a horrific fire ravaged the historic landmark earlier this week. While firefighters were able to save the main structure, the full extent of the damage is not yet known. Initial estimates put the cost of repairs in the billions. Luckily for insurers, the majority of those costs will likely be funded by France.
Robert Read, head of art and private client at Lloyd’s of London insurer Hiscox spoke Reuters about the tragedy, saying that it could take upwards of 20 years to full restore the cathedral.
“It is really going to be up to the French state and benefactors to help to restore and rebuild this,” said Read. “The scaffolding costs are going to be enormous, actually securing the building is going to be enormous. The cost of renovating the (British) Parliament is a similar sort of number.” To put that quote in perspective, the estimated costs for the Parliament renovation tops $8 billion.
French President Emmanuel Macron has already called upon the country to help fund the repair costs. Within a day, close to half a billion dollars was raised. A bulk of the money pledged came from France’s business elite, including the owners of LVMH and Kering.
Not only did Notre Dame undergo serious structural damage, but the cathedral also hosts some of the most priceless art in the world. While some of the art was saved, some was certainly destroyed. When it comes to priceless art, it is often uninsurable since it is, quite literally, irreplaceable. Luckily, any piece of art on loan by a third party usually does have some sort of insurance policy.
Rebuilding Notre Dame to its former glory will take decades, and billions of dollars. Luckily, people around the world are already coming together to make sure it happens. Experts estimate that it could take up to a year before we understand the full cost of the damages caused by the fire.