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Asian News - Singapore: New premiums grew 8% in 2015 to US$2 bln

Source: Asia Insurance Review | Mar 2016

Singapore life sector’s weighted new business premiums for 2015 grew 8% y-o-y to S$2.99 billion (US$2.15 billion) amidst implementation of key initiatives, according to the Life Insurance Association Singapore (LIA).
   Dr Khoo Kah Siang, President of LIA Singapore, said: “2015 has been a purposeful year for life insurance in Singapore as we focussed on implementation of the key Financial Advisory Industry Review (FAIR) initiatives – compareFIRST, Direct Purchase Insurance (DPI) products and Balanced Scorecard for financial adviser representatives.”
   Weighted annual premium sales grew 7% to $2.05 billion while weighted single premium sales grew 9% to $940.8 million. New business total sum assured grew 14% to $101.2 billion, a record for the industry.
   Dr Khoo attributed the performance to “healthy growth” across all types of life and health coverage.
   compareFIRST, a web portal for consumers to compare life insurance products of different companies, and DPI, a class of simple life insurance products sold without commissions and financial advice, were introduced in April 2015. DPI products drew approximately $550,000 of new premiums last year.
   The Balanced Scorecard framework became effective 1 January 2016. It assesses a representative’s performance every quarter and assigning a grade from A to E, which in turn can affect remuneration.
   The FAIR initiatives mean policyholders can look forward to enhancements on disclosure of insurance policy details relating to illustrated investment returns, bonuses as well as less jargon in policy documents by the end of the year. A key reform will involve including the projected yields to maturity or net returns in the benefit illustration of the participating life or “par” plans.
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