Hong Kong insurance premiums dip slightly in first nine months

Key revenue stream suffers huge crash due to pandemic restrictions

Hong Kong insurance premiums dip slightly in first nine months

Insurance News

By Gabriel Olano

The Hong Kong insurance industry recorded total gross premiums of HK$455.9 billion (SG$79.9 billion) for the first three quarters of 2021, a decrease of 1.1% from the corresponding period last year.

Long-term business

 According to provisional statistics from the Insurance Authority (IA), total revenue premiums of in-force long-term business were HK$407.1 billion in the first three quarters of 2021, a 1.3 % decrease year over year. Of these, HK$335.5 billion came from individual life and annuity (non-linked) business, HK$32.1 billion from individual life and annuity (linked) business, and HK$34.8 billion from retirement scheme business.

New office premiums (excluding retirement business) showed strong growth, with 24% growth to HK$122.5 billion. In particular, individual life and annuity (linked) business grew by 179.6% to HK$$21.9 billion.

However, the IA said that the growth should be taken in context of a low base of comparison in 2020. Life insurance sales saw a huge slump last year due to the effects of COVID-19 restrictions.

Insurance sales from Mainland Chinese visitors took a 92.7% nosedive, from HK$6.5 billion in the first three quarters of 2020 to around $470 million in the corresponding period of 2021, due to ongoing travel restrictions.

General business

Gross and net premiums of general insurance business were HK$48.8 billion and HK$32.8 billion, reflecting an increase of 0.6% and a decrease of 0.2%, respectively. The overall underwriting profit decreased from HK$1.435 billion to HK$1.223 billion.

Pecuniary loss business gross premiums continued to grow to HK$3.5 billion, up 35.5%, due to the upward adjustment of maximum property values under the mortgage insurance programme. Increases were also recorded for property (6.6%), marine (9.3%) and general liability (11.5%). Accident and health premiums declined by 4.7%, mostly due to stagnant outbound travel, which saw non-medical business decrease by 24.3%.

For reinsurance inward business, the gross and net premiums were HK$12 billion (down 6.6%) and HK$6.5 billion (down 16.9%), respectively. This was attributed to the contraction of motor business, which was offset by growth in the accident and health business and property lines. Overall underwriting performance improved from HK$172 million to HK$361 million, mainly driven by favourable claims experience.

Related Stories

Keep up with the latest news and events

Join our mailing list, it’s free!