12 June 2019
In order to discuss the unique issues, challenges and opportunities for Myanmar’s emerging insurance market, “Into Myanmar: Insurance Summit 2019” began in Yangon on Tuesday.
Ministry of Planning and Finance (MoPF) issued an Announcement on 2nd January 2019 to pave the way for foreign insurers to enter into the local insurance market as part of an ongoing liberalization process. On 5th of April 2019, Myanmar government provisionally authorized 5 foreign insurance companies to establish the main subsidiaries.
Myanmar is one of the last frontiers in Asia that offers marvelous potential, with general insurance growing at 16.1% a year and life insurance at 25.3% a year, and with insurance density only estimated to be US$0.99537 and penetration at 0.07%. These recent developments present exciting market potential for both foreign and local insurers.
CEO, Magenta Global Pte Ltd, Maggie Tan said “Insurance sector is interesting one. It is developing. It used to be abnormally. Now with the guarantee of license to 5 insurance companies 100% foreign companies. I think the market can be comparative; the industry has a lot to learn in terms of how to create the trusts needed to move industry forward. Because I think for this sector, trust is important how to actually build the peerless to develop this sector. In terms of challenge, I think one is regulation. There is actually needs to be transparent. Regulations are very important.”
The government also allowed foreign non-life insurers to form joint ventures with local non-life insurers to bring technical know-how and international best practices to Myanmar and to develop the insurance industry in the country. This liberalization is expected to create considerable interest from foreign lenders and investors.
Director, Financial Regulatory Department, Thant Zin said “There are 11 life insurance companies, 8 general insurance companies from local and 33 representative offices of foreign insurers in Myanmar. Now reviewing processes are being made to choose 5 foreign insurance companies which will be issued licenses to operate after formally accepting Request for Proposal documents.”
It’s learnt that the summit will be run till 12th June in Yangon at Park Royal Hotel.