Life Insurance Association of Malaysia (LIAM) members closed the year 2021 with a robust 12.4% growth in new business over 2020.
Reflecting the increase in awareness among consumers on the importance of life insurance protection amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, the industry recorded stronger performance amounting to MYR12.8bn ($3.1bn) in new business total premiums for the financial year ended December 2021, compared to MYR11.4bn in 2020.
In a statement, LIAM president Loh Guat Lan said the industry recorded a healthier performance, driven by the strong rebound of investment-linked policies which rose 31.2% to reach MYR6.6bn in 2021, despite the challenging business environment due to the pandemic. Group policies recorded a moderate growth of 7.7% in new business total premiums to MYR4.1bn during the year. However, traditional policies charted a decline of 17.3% in the same period.
“In terms of new policies issued in 2021, we recorded a strong growth of 53.5% from 1.2m policies in 2020 to 1.9m policies in 2021. This was mainly due to traditional policies which charted a huge increase of 99.7% to reach 1.2m policies in 2021,” she said.
Speaking on the outlook for the industry in 2022, Ms Loh was positive about the developments in the country over the coming months.
In particular, she said the government-funded Perlindungan Tenang Voucher (PTV) programme has seen an encouraging take-up rate. Under the programme, about 8.4m eligible families and individuals from low-income groups are entitled to purchase a protection plan from participating licensed insurers in the country.
“The waiver of stamp duty for the purchase of PTV products until the year 2025 will in the long run encourage more recipients to continue with their protection plans to ensure that their families and loved ones are protected against key risks in life. The introduction of the PTV programme to the lower-income groups is expected to support the demand for life insurance policies that will help drive the adoption of life insurance in the country,” she said.