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Insurance industry in the Philippines - statistics & facts

The uncertainties and limited economic activity during the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 changed the perspective of consumers in the Philippines when it comes to insurance. This, and the availability of newer insurance coverage for individual customers with pre-existing needs or with a medical condition, resulted in the slight growth of the insurance penetration in the Philippines in comparison to 2019. In addition, the overall insurance premiums written, which accounted for 1.55 percent of the Philippines’ gross national income, also reflected year-over-year growth since 2016 – except for a slight decline in 2019.   

Insurance landscape in the Philippines

The insurance industry in the Philippines is varied and comprehensive, with plans ranging from life to non-life, pre-need, and micro and macro insurances. The entire industry is regulated by the Insurance Commission which oversees and reports the financial activities of the different insurance companies. Between insurance types, life insurance has a higher insurance density, reflecting increasing premium income generated. In 2020, the leading life insurance companies in the country in terms of premium income were Sun Life of Canada, Philippine Axa Life Insurance Corporation, and PRU Life Insurance Corporation of the U.K. Meanwhile, for non-life insurance, which covers auto, health, business, and home insurance, the market leaders were Malayan Insurance and Pioneer Insurance & Surety Corporation.    

Since getting insurance coverage could mean additional expenses for most, Filipinos belonging to low-income households could turn to cheaper insurance products known as microinsurance. Microinsurance policies in the Philippines were mostly written by the Mutual Benefits Association (MBA). Paying sick benefits and furnishing financial support to MBA members while out of employment were two of the associations’ provisions. In a recent finding, the Mutual Benefits Associations (MBAs) issued premiums worth approximately 11 billion Philippine pesos for covering microinsurance needs. In addition, the Universal Health Care (UHC) Act have also automatically enrolled all Filipinos in public health insurance ensuring them accessible and affordable health care coverage.  

Gearing towards insurance coverage for all

Considering the COVID-19 pandemic and recent calamities in the Philippines, insurance is now more necessary than ever. Filipinos have increasingly recognized the risks of a lack of security in cases of death, unforeseen accidents, and hospitalization costs from illnesses. To provide for the insurance needs of its citizens, the government offers several social insurance programs for both public and private employees as well voluntary members and overseas Filipinos. This covers a comprehensive list of benefits including maternity, retirement, and death subsidies, as well as general insurance coverage. Selected private insurance companies have also started offering flexible insurance policies, with some including built-in investments, that will further encourage Filipinos to be insured.  

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