Cathay Life saw highest first-year insurance premium revenues in 2004

Jan 24, 2005 Ι Industry In-Focus Ι Furniture Ι By Ben, CENS
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Taipei, Jan. 24, 2005 (CENS)--Cathay Life Insurance Co., Ltd., Taiwan's largest life insurer, registered NT$84.7 billion (US$2.66 billion at US$1:NT$31.8) in first-year premium revenue last year, ranking first in the domestic life-insurance sector, according to statistics compiled by the Life Insurance Association of the Republic of China (LIA-ROC).

The second place went to Shin Kong Life Insurance Co. which saw a substantial increase in sales of interest-variable annuity last year. The company said interest-variable annuity accounted for over 60% of its total premium revenue last year.

Fubon Life Insurance Co. ranked third in first-year premium revenue last year, followed by Allianz President Life Insurance Co. and Nan Shan Life Insurance Co. Fubon and Allianz President focused on investment-linked policies, especially the bond-linked ones, last year.

Others squeezing into the list of top-10 insurers in terms of first-year premium revenue for 2004, in descending order, were: Life Insurance Department of Chunghwa Post Co., China Life Insurance Co., Taiwan Branch of ING Life Insurance Co. of America, Taiwan Life Insurance Co., and PCA Life Assurance Co.

LIA-ROC said the first-year premium revenue is considered as a barometer to gauge the insurers' ability to extend new business. At present, there are 29 life insurers, both domestic and foreign owned, operating in Taiwan.

Thanks to its successful marketing strategy in focusing on the most popular business scopes in sales of conventional insurance policy, investment-linked policy and interest-variable annuity, Cathay registered an average of NT$230 million (US$7.23 million) in premium revenue daily last year.

Despite the hardship in extending business under the low-interest-rate environment, Taiwan's life insurance companies en masse still made substantial growth in securing first-year premium revenues last year.

Taiwan's life insurance industry overall posted NT$1.3 trillion (US$40.88 billion) and NT$446.2 billion (US$14.03 billion) in total premium revenue and first-year premium revenue last year, up 15.5% and 29.57%, respectively, from the year earlier.

LIA-ROC said investment-linked insurance and interest-variable annuity replaced the position of conventional insurance last year. The association noted banks are increasingly playing a crucial role in domestic insurance market because conventional insurance policies are mostly sold through salesperson while sales of investment-linked and interest-variable insurance policies rely on both salesperson and bank counters.

Ranks of Taiwan Life Insurers In First-Year Insurance Premium Revenue in 2004

Unit: NT$100 million

Ranks

Company

Premium Revenue

Change (%)

1

Cathay

847

38.6

2

Shin Kong

501

58.7

3

Fubon

436

34.6

4

Allianz President

377

26.1

5

Nan Shan

366

16.1

6

Chunghwa Post

318

13.5

7

China

257

32.0

8

ING

182

37.7

9

Taiwan

167

93.8

10

PCA

134

54.4

Whole Industry

4,462

29.5

Source: The Life Insurance Association of the Republic of China

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