More than $10 billion has been paid by insurers in commercial and residential settlements as a result of the Canterbury Earthquake.

By the end of last year, $6.7 billion dollars had been paid out for commercial settlements and $3.5 billion in residential settlements, according to the Insurance Council of New Zealand.

The figures didn't include recent settlements, including the largest payout in New Zealand's history - to the Ports of Lyttelton for $428 million, Insurance Council chief executive Tim Grafton said.

"That means 70 per cent of all commercial claims have now been settled and reinforces the value of insurance in helping the commercial sector to quickly recover from what was one of the biggest ever insurance disaster events globally."


In 2013 more than $1.56 billion was paid out in settling and completing Canterbury earthquake residential claims, Mr Grafton said.

"That's over $4 million a day being paid out to settle residential claims, taking the total residential payments for repairs, rebuilds and cash settlements to date to over $3.5 billion."

As a result, builders were reporting that over 6000 residential properties were built in 2013, a figure which would increase to 7000 in 2014.

Much of the building was due to insurance monies released through cash settlements, Mr Grafton said.