Malaysia: Personal insurance cover eludes nearly 40% of poll respondents

| 18 Nov 2021

More than a third of Malaysians (38%) still lack personal insurance protection, according to "An Impact of Pandemic on Protection" survey commissioned by Zurich Malaysia (Zurich).

The survey found that the COVID-19 pandemic had led to increased awareness of the need to have insurance protection, as stated by 84% of the respondents. However, the increased awareness has not led to buying insurance.

Zurich said that affordability is the main reason for not having insurance protection. Of the 1,201 respondents, 62% stated that the pandemic had affected their ability to afford insurance or takaful. Meanwhile, about 23% or almost one in every four Malaysians cannot afford personal protection at all.

The insurer added that a lack of understanding and information as well as negative perception of the insurance industry were also cited as reasons for not having an insurance or takaful plan.

Zurich Malaysia country head Junior Cho said, “This survey was an effort to understand how the pandemic had impacted Malaysians in terms of protection.

“The findings are important for the industry to formulate relevant solutions that address customers’ challenges, so that we can build a brighter future together with and for Malaysians.”

The survey was conducted in late September among Malaysians in all states, with the majority of the respondents in the 18 to 34 age group (64%) — the prime years to start planning for protection for a brighter future.

Zurich said almost three-quarters of respondents (72%) are willing to set aside up to MYR200 ($48) a month for protection if they can afford it, adding that Malaysians rely on employers to provide protection for them.

The insurer added that the main reason Malaysians choose to get personal protection is for retirement or their own purposes in the future, such as to provide for their family.