Malaysian property and casualty insurance segment returned to growth in 2021

KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian property and casualty insurance market returned to growth with a solid 3% in 2021 after declining 0.6% in the previous year, said Allianz in its latest Global Insurance Report.

In a statement, the insurer said the life segment continued to experience robust growth of 8% as it benefitted from the increased risk awareness in the wake of the Covid-19 crisis.

On average, the total market expanded 6.5% in 2021.

"For 2022, we expect growth to slightly accelerate to 8.3% (life: 9.1%, p&c: 6.3%).

"Over the entire next decade, average growth should reach 6.7% per year (life: 6.9%, p&c: 6.1%). This would be above the pace of the previous decade (4.5%), reflecting the improved growth outlook," said Allianz.

Meanwhile, global premiums rose 5.1% in 2021 (life:4.4%; p&c:6.3%), due to strong economic headwinds, rising risk awareness and record-high savings buoyed by booming markets

Allianz added that total premium income reached EUR4.2 trillion with the life and property and casualty segments contributing EUR2.5 trillion and EUR1.7 trillion respectively.

"But what made 2021 really remarkable is the composition of premium growth: More than two-thirds were generated in Western Europe and North America, with the US market alone accounting for half of the increase.

"Thus, 2021 represents an unusual end to the past decade in which growth was much lower (+3.6% per year on average) and driven by Asia, which accounted for 40% of all additional premiums, more than half of them written in China," it said.

Consequently, China’s global market share doubled to 12%.

Allianz however is turning less optimistic on 2022 growth prospects, which it had forecast to be another bumper year for the insurance industry.

It said premium income is likely to grow about one percentage point slower than originally assume as invasion of Ukraine takes it toll on economic activity and confidence, even as inflation supports the top line.

"Overall, we now expect global premium income to grow by 4.8% in 2022, with life and p&c developing almost in step (4.9% and 4.6% respectively).

"This figure must be considered against the backdrop of a global inflation rate of 6.2% this year," it said.

For the next 10 years however, annual growth is forecast at 4.8%, with life at 4.9% and property and casualty at 4.6% growth.

This will correspond to an increase in premium income by 67% or EUR2.8 trillion, comprising 69% growth in the life segment and 63% in property and casualty.

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