Healthy Growth for Life Insurance Industry in First Half 2017

Industry introduces direct distribution channels making life insurance products easily accessible for all Malaysians
Kuala Lumpur, 22 August 2017 - The life insurance industry registered a healthy growth in the first half of 2017 with 4.7% growth in new business weighted premium (100% of regular premiums plus 10% of single premiums).  New business weighted premium hit RM2.56 billion as compared with RM2.44 billion achieved in the same period a year ago.
Gross sum assured for all new individual policies combined, registered RM60.4 billion compared with RM53.5 billion achieved in 1H2016.
For the first half of 2017, the life insurance industry paid out higher claims compared with the same period of 2016.  The industry registered a 3.2% increase in benefit payments for death, disability, medical, bonuses and others, amounting to RM4.97 billion as compared with RM4.82 billion for the same period last year.
In tandem with the industry’s aspiration to make life insurance products easily accessible through various distribution channels, in July 2017, the industry introduced Direct Channel for sale of pure protection life insurance such as term insurance.
Under the Direct Distribution Channels platform, the public can purchase life insurance via the internet or insurance companies’ offices.
The Direct Distribution channel is one of the initiatives under the Life Insurance and Family Takaful Framework issued by Bank Negara Malaysia in November 2015 to diversify distribution channels for wider outreach to consumers.  The objective is to increase the percentage of Malaysians with life insurance from the current level of 56% to 75% by year 2020.
The number of registered life insurance agents saw a decline of 5.2% to 77,736 agents as of 30 June 2017 (30 June 2016: 81,985 agents).  The number of bank staff registered to sell life insurance experienced a slight decline of 1.9% to 18,652 bank staff as of 30 June 2017 (30 June 2016 : 19,010 bank staff).  Overall, the industry also experienced a lower rate of new agents joining the industry from 8,877 (30 June 2016) to 7,683 agents as of 30 June 2017.
The above trend is reflective of the qualitative and quantitative measures imposed by the life insurance companies to improve the professionalism and productivity of intermediaries.  This is in line with the industry’s vision to produce quality agents, encourage part time agents to become full time and the commitment of agents in terms of quality of service delivery.  These are positive developments to widen the access to life insurance through different distribution channels.
click here for The Life Insurance Statistics in Q2 2017
In Support of