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Myanmar: Local insurers eye partnerships with international parties

Source: Asia Insurance Review | Nov 2017


Local insurers are ready to forge ventures with global companies to cash in on the potential of the under-served insurance market in Myanmar.
   This is currently a “wait and watch” period as it is unclear whether Myanmar would allow foreign companies to enter via the joint venture route or open up the sector to 100% foreign investment, according to a report in Deal Street Asia. A decision is expected by the year-end with 2018-2019 seen as the timeline for the space to open up.
   The industry, which opened its doors to locally owned private sector players in 2013, is currently represented by one state-owned player (Myanma Insurance), 11 private players and 20 foreign firms which have representative offices in the country. 
   Some local insurance companies have signed Memoranda of Understanding for technical collaboration and knowledge sharing with foreign counterparts. For example, Citizen Business Insurance Public has signed an MOU with Thailand’s Muang Thai Life Assurance and Canada’s Manulife Financial Corporation.
   Currently, foreign insurers are not allowed to conduct business in Myanmar except for Tokio Marine & Nichido Fire, Sompo Japan Nipponkoa and Mitsui Sumitomo Insurance which have provided insurance coverage at the Thilawa Economic Zone since 2015. A 
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