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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Insurance revenues soar as claims decline

Insurance revenues soar as claims decline

INSURANCE overview
Providers: Cambodia has six insurance companies: Forte, CAMINCO, Asia, Campubank Lonpac, Infinity, and Cambodia-Vietnam Insurance.
Claims: The biggest claim yet publically recorded was paid out in April 2009 to Suntex Pte Ltd Forte, which had insured its garment factory in Phnom Penh's Dangkor district before it burned down.

Strength: Last year, the industry earned total premium revenue of $20.07 million.

PREMIUM revenues across Cambodia’s insurance industry increased by 18 percent to US$8.2 million in the first five months of this year, versus the same period last year, according to figures from the General Insurance Association of Cambodia (GIAC).

GIAC Chairman Chhay Rattanak said yesterday that premiums from fire insurance contributed 26 percent, motor and miscellaneous insurance 25 percent each, and medical and health insurance, 16 percent to revenues.

He added that the sum for claims in the first five months of 2010 was $2.34 million, down 25 percent compared to the same period last year.

“The amount of claims is small so far, unlike last year when the industry was the hardest-hit [by the] biggest claim ever had in Cambodia,” he said, referring to $9 million paid out by Forte Insurance to Suntex Pte Ltd in compensation for a fire that destroyed its garment factory in Phnom Penh.

“Gradually, the trend for buying insurance has been increasing. We think that the upward trend is back on track, especially engineering and medical insurance,” he said. He forecast that the industry would grow by between 10 percent and 15 percent this year.

Individual companies are reporting even more positive results in what is widely considered one of Cambodia’s growth sectors.

Infinity Insurance saw premium revenue growth of 30 percent to $1.35 million in the first five months of this year.

“We are seeing an increase in demand for construction and professional liability insurance, which reflects growing investment confidence in the country,” said David Carter, chief executive officer of Infinity, yesterday. He predicts that the firm would see growth of about 25 percent in 2010, to gather $5 million in revenues.

Youk Chamroeunrith, General Manager of Forte Insurance, added that Forte’s premium revenue increased by 29 percent in the first five months of this year compared with the same period last year. He forecast the growth of 20 percent at Forte for 2010 as Cambodia’s economic recovery gathers pace.

“Premium revenues from all sectors of insurance have been on the rise, especially the insurance on fire, vehicle and health,” he said.

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