The insurance sector in Cambodia earned $201.7 million in premiums in the first nine months of this year, climbing 8.2 per cent from the $186.3 million logged in the same time last year, the Insurance Association of Cambodia (IAC) reported.
Of that, general and life insurance premiums came to $87.9 and $109.8 million, surging 18.2 and 2.8 per cent year-on-year from $74.4 and $106.8 million.
Micro-insurance premiums were to the tune of $4.1 million, tumbling 21.7 per cent year-on-year, IAC said.
The sub-segments of general insurance also saw year-on-year gains in premiums for the period from January-September – marine, aircraft and transport (35.3 per cent), health (21.5 per cent), fire (15.9 per cent), vehicle (seven per cent), other (15.1 per cent), it said.
IAC president Huy Vatharo told The Post on November 24 that the insurance market remains on a positive track, but that Covid-19 impeded the rate of growth enjoyed by the sector between 2018 and last year, and that total enrolment in individual insurance plans had fallen.
He said: “The negative consequences of Covid-19 have cut across all sectors, but the insurance sector in Cambodia remains in the green zone, just not as high as it used to be.”
Forte Insurance (Cambodia) Plc group CEO Youk Chamroeunrith said his company netted 17 per cent more in insurance premiums over the first nine months of this year than in the year-ago period.
But he pointed out that this was three percentage points less than the growth seen last year from the corresponding period in 2018.
He said travel, transportation, real estate and construction insurance were the hardest hit by Covid-19, whereas health and vehicle insurance were still going strong.
He noted that premium income on individual insurance policies logged a sharp decline over the period.
Am Kim Tol, CEO of Milvik (Cambodia) Micro Insurance Plc, which operates under the brand “BIMA Cambodia”, said the pandemic had been particularly harsh on her company given that most clients are factory workers and small businesses, many of whom have lost their income.
She said: “Bearing in mind that BIMA Cambodia is a small insurance company with a majority of low-income clients, fallout from the Covid-19 crisis was inevitable.”
Kim Tol said her company’s premiums fell by between five and seven per cent year-on-year in the first nine months of this year.
IAC said it currently comprises 31 insurance companies – 15 general insurers, 10 life insurers, five micro-insurers and one reinsurer.
The insurance sector paid out around $21.7 million in claims in the first nine months of this year, it said. General, life and micro insurance accounted for $16.1, $4.7 and $0.75 million.
The sector earned $245.8 million in premiums last year, up from $196.4 million in 2018 and $151.6 million in 2017, it added.