Can we make healthy insurance lemonade out
of a vicious health system lemon?
Health insurance represents, for more than 10 years, some kind of "fata
morgana" of the Romanian profile market. Year after year, we talk
about the impressive potential of this segment, we are elaborating
development strategies, we are designing products... However, results
are still awaited... And discussions are starting again and again
each time when the political factor changes.
Defining the basic package, the co-payment, deductibilities - are
only a few of the solutions to revive the system that have been circulating.
All have remained, up to this moment, just projects.
However, it seems that things have slowly begun to move... Thus,
we were recently announcing the signing of one of the largest contracts
in the health insurance market: SIGNAL Iduna will offer health insurance
for 9,000 employees of TAKATA Petri, for a premium rising to EUR
This is a sign that the economy beginning to grow again will also
have positive effects on the health insurance system...
Until that time, however, insurers are setting-up development strategies,
they are designing products... and are still waiting for clarification
of the legal framework.
To see what can be done so that health insurance does not remain
the "fata morgana" of the market, we invite you on Tuesday,
May 24th, to Life and Health Insurance Day within this year's FIAR
- the International Insurance-Reinsurance Forum.
here for details!
First of all, what is the purpose of your visit in Romania?
The European insurance sector was and still is very positive
about Solvency II. We believe that it will really change not
just how companies operate but also how a supervisor operates,
regulation should react ultimately.
General Director CEA - European Insurance and Reinsurance Federation
Michaela KOLLER: The purpose of my visit here is to get a deeper
insight into the Romanian market. Certainly for our work at European
level, it is extremely important to have a clear insight into how
the markets react on any potential general regulatory development
and Romania is a very important market. We have seen a lot of positive
development coming from this market and of course, we are in permanent
contact with our members, because UNSAR is represented in many committees,
but it is best to be in place to get a feeling from the market. I
had a meeting with some members of the board of UNSAR, which was
very instructive and gave me also a lot of feedback on where the
problems are, on which issues we need to work at European level,
what we can do to advance things in a positive direction.
XPRIMM: The European insurance market passed a very difficult
period lately. Would you say that this crisis is it over or do we
still have to work for that?
M. K.: First let me state, that it wasn’t the insurance
segment that triggered the crisis. If anything, the insurance segment
played a stabilizing role in the crisis. We have really stayed with
our investment and we have a long term perspective as an industry.
What we see now, is that we are affected by reactions had by regulators
on the financial crisis.
European level, the attitude towards Solvency II is a positive
We have positive signals, especially from the European Commission,
that problematic segments were identified and it will focus on them.
Therefore, the insurance industry is offering all its support, in
order to obtain a proper regulatory regime in the long term. With
these issues resolved, the market impact is more likely to be positive,
rather than a negative one, because this system represents a very
good chance to create a healthy business environment, said Michaela
KOLLER, Director General of CEA, Federation of European Insurers
II may indirectly influence premiums value
"Solvency II will not translate into a price increase, although it will definitely
have an effect. Thus, the results registered during QIS 5 exercise, compared
to QIS 4, show that, for many business lines, more capital will be required.
The capital has a cost and its cost can only be financed from premiums. There
will be a limitation of growth, not an avoidance, since price increase is inevitable",
said Cristian CONSTANTINESCU, President of UNSAR.
Romania, the country with the highest medium and long term potential
Even though the forecast for 2011 sees a one digit decrease and a
slight increase for 2012 - 2015, GENERALI representatives appreciate
that, on the long term, the Romanian insurance market will keep its
"This is the opinion of international financial analysts, whom consider
Romania, along with Poland, a country with extreme development potential on long
and medium term. If we consider the present insurance penetration rate in Romania,
we come to see room for improvement and development. Of course, in order for
such to happen, we need a favorable economic context", Marie KOVAROVA, General
Manager of GENERALI Romania and Responsible for GENERALI's Group Operations in
Romania, has declared for XPRIMM Newsletters.
DIMA: Our current development level does not yet allow us to outsource
As a niche area in Romania, claims handling is still at a relatively
reduced level. Internationally speaking, claims handling, which implies
claims outsourcing has a long history and has now become a usual
practice. "We have not yet reached a level that allows us to outsource:
in Great Britain, that level is close to 70% of the total activities
in the insurance field; in Western Europe it is at approximately
30%, with an increasingly strong tendency", stated Ionel DIMA, Vice
President, AVUS Group.
Claims handling is almost considered a necessity for most insurance
companies, once they start operating at an international level. Ongoing
from motor insurance or marine insurance and all the way to life
insurance, this practice is now necessary because insurers do not
own physical ways to manage or handle certain cases outside the countries
in which they activate.
non-motor hull portfolio strategy is paying off
CERTASIG continues portfolio diversification through products with
a low claims rate, thus following profitability improvement, trend
that also manifested through the strategically positioned branches
in Constanta, Timisoara and Cluj. "We are glad to confirm an excellent
start in terms of underwritings volume for the first quarter of 2011,
especially February and March which recorded a significant growth.
Brokers still count for 80% of the underwritten premiums, which maintains
our trust in this collaboration's success", declared James GRINDLEY,
General Manager, CERTASIG, for XPRIMM Newsletters.
Regarding the motor hull portfolio, the underwritten volume shrank,
mainly due to applying a new strategy, namely the introduction of
a less used deductible application system.
targets portfolio balancing and compensation services improvement
Bringing a balance in the structure of the portfolio is the strategic
measure through which EUROINS Romania will counteract the negative
effects brought by the motor segment evolution. Iulius Alin BUCSA,
General Manager, EUROINS Romania stated for XPRIMM Newsletters that "spectacular
growth in the property, liabilities and travel assistance lines make
us believe that we are on the right path". For 2011, the company
is also aiming for improvement in all service categories available
to all clients, especially compensation related ones.
As for the insurance market as a whole, the EUROINS leader estimates
profitability impairment, in the context of dramatic rates reduction
for two of the main insurance market engines - Motor Hull and MTPL.
Asigurari is counting on specific tailor-made products
The business lines targeted by PLATINUM Asigurari - property insurance
and liability - have improved their stake in the portfolio by almost
200% since the beginning of the year. The company shall maintain
this pace as business along 2011 are expected to come mainly from
property insurance, warantees, liability and cargo and marine insurance. "For
these business lines and not only, we will continue to offer classic
insurance products as well as launching, in line with our niche insurer
status, specific, tailor-made products", declared Anca BABANEATA,
CEO, PLATINUM Asigurari, for XPRIMM Newsletters.
No sudden cost increase with insurance
Although the price increase from the first quarter of the current
year have limited to risks affected by claims, eroded budgets
belonging to insurance and reinsurance companies and the threat
represented by the hurricanes are putting pressure on the insurance
markets worldwide, according to a recent MARSH report.
Broker: In 2010, brokers might reach 40% of the whole insurance
The insurance brokerage market has lately been gaining from
the economic crisis, the role of insurance consultant being
more and more important for citizens whom desire was to contract
the best insurance product considering the quality - price
Life launched a new edition of ING Selectis, the single
premium unit-linked insurance
ING Asigurari de Viata launched a new edition of the ING Selectis
product, completing the range of unit-linked insurance with
single premium and 100% protection of the invested capital
offered to clients, in which other two ING Selectis products
were launched in 2010. The new edition will be available during
May 2nd - May 27th, 2011. Like the previous edition, the duration
of the product is six years, and the single premium of at least
EUR 2,000 is paid at the beginning of the contract.
- unit-linked life insurance with guaranteed profit, from
GENERALI Asigurari has announced, on the 27th of April, 2011,
the launch of GaranT, a unit-linked insurance which offers,
besides the protection component of a life insurance, the guarantee,
at the maturity of the policy, of the highest value of the
fund unit registered during the contract. Thus, customers are
protected from possible negative variations of investment funds,
especially near maturity of contracts.
insurance - down by 2 percent
In 2010, according to INSURANCE Profile, on the travel insurance
segment, insurers underwrote premiums worth EUR 9.8 million,
2.4% less than in 2009.
Leader on this segment is GENERALI Asigurari which, with the
taking over of the RAI Asigurari portfolio, owns a market share
of about 31%.
3.8 million profit for GARANTA Asigurari in 2010
The shareholders of GARANTA Asigurari will receive this year
dividends of RON 3.6 million correspondent to net profit registered
last year, representing 94% of the total value of the 2010
financial result, of RON 3.83 million, according to a report
published by the insurer.
- now available for Russian speakers
On the 27th of April, the Russian language version of the www.xprimm.md web-portal
was launched. This way, all information regarding the insurance markets
from the Republic of Moldova and other countries in the region will
also be available for Russian speakers.
Since its official launch and until now, www.xprimm.md became
one of the main sources of information for those interested in the
evolution of insurance markets in Central and Eastern Europe. Every
month, over 5.000 visitors access the portal and their number is
expected to increase as a result of the launch of the Russian version.
launched a public insurance awareness campaign
EUROASIG Grup has recently launched an awareness campaign entitled "It
is good to be insured!". This initiative has as main purpose increasing
the population's education regarding insurance products and their
The action consist in broadcasting three different TV spots for motor,
property and life insurance, and also delivering informational materials
in the written press and not only.
years since the Chernobyl disaster. Ukraine renew calls for more
money for the reactor's shelter
25 years since the disaster in Chernobyl, the threat of a radioactive
contamination has not vanished. The huge concrete shelter, 29,000
tones and 110 meters high that covered the damaged nuclear reactor
and the 200 tone of radioactive fuel, has started to crack and is
currently in danger of collapsing. Hence, the Ukrainian government
used the 25th anniversary to renew calls for the international community
to raise money up to EUR 1.5 billion for building a new shelter.
insurers reported gross premiums of EUR 25.8 billion in 2010
Insurance companies in Russia underwrote, in the former year, gross
premiums valued EUR 25.8 billion, up by 14.5% in comparison with
2009, according to XPRIMM Special Report publications, based on the
data supplied by the local supervisory authority. At the same time,
profile societies registered claims worth EUR 19 billion, while in
2009 the figure went to EUR 16.9 billion.
2 billion for the Ukrainian insurance market in 2010
The volume of gross written premiums for 2010 by the insurance
companies in Ukraine totaled EUR 2.13 billion, 12.9% more
than in 2009 (EUR 1.78 billion). At the same time, the paid
claims volume decreased by 9%, down to EUR 576.9 million
(from EUR 585.2 million in 2009), according to the results
published in INSURANCE TOP Magazine.
Ukraine - a 4.2 percentage growth for underwritings in
the first trimester of 2010
INGO Ukraine totaled EUR 8.73 million in gross underwritten
premiums in the first trimester of 2010, on the non life segment,
4.2% higher when comparing to the similar time of the former
year. At the same time, solved claims reached EUR 3.32 million,
according to the data presented by the insurance company.
Economics improved Romania's GDP estimates for 2011 to 1.2 pc
Analysts of the British institute OXFORD Economics modified Romania's
gross domestic product (GDP) growth estimate for 2011 from 0.1 pc
to 1.2 pc this year, due to optimistic perspectives for exports and
industry and following some encouraging signals from the other economic
sectors, Mediafax reports.
of tourists surpasses one million
The number of tourists reported in Q1 of this year is larger
than the one reported in the same period last year. Thus, the
number of tourists grew by 13.2 percent to 1.12 million during
the aforementioned period.
interested in renewable energy sector
Renewable energy sector deals in Romania is going to see an
upward trend, stated Alexandru LUPEA, Partner, Assurance Services,
Energy, Utilities and Mining Industry Group Leader with PwC
Rose investing EUR 10 million in wind park
The company ENERGY Rose, owned by Israeli investors, is building
its first wind park in Romania, in Casimcea, following a EUR
10 million-investment, Mediafax reports.
THE EDITORIAL STAFF:
COSTACHE CEO: Adriana
Business Development Director: Alexandru
Editor in Chief: Mihaela
Scientific Advisor: Daniela
International Column Coordinator: Andreea
Senior Editors: Vlad
PANCIU, Oleg DORONCEANU
BOLDIJAR, Oana RADU, Mihai CRACEA, Andreea STATE
Junior Editor: Dora
ALECU, Olesea SERGHIESCU, Alex
Accounts Manager: Georgiana
IT Department: Octavian
GRIGOR, Dorin PALADE, Cosmin ARMASESCU
PUBLISHED BY: Media
Reproduction or use without permission of editorial or graphic
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data. The Editorial Staff has the right to present the data in
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information contained in this e-mail, Romanian laws apply.
Copyright©2011 Media XPRIMM
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