Following the opening of a new branch office in South Korea in June, Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty SE (AGCS) is targeting further growth in Asia by expanding its presence in China and Indonesia. AGCS has commenced operations in Beijing, China, as a division of Allianz China’s new office in the country’s capital. The Beijing division, located in China Overseas Plaza is AGCS’s third in the country, after Guangdong and Shanghai, and marks full network coverage across China’s tier-one cities. In Indonesia, AGCS operates as a division of Allianz Utama in Jakarta. In both locations, AGCS operates as a reinsurer of the local Allianz companies, with embedded expert teams dedicated to AGCS corporate insurance business.
By expanding its network AGCS aims to capitalize on opportunities from the growing insurance markets in China and Indonesia. China is the world’s second-largest insurance market, and in 2016, accounted for close to half of global insurance growth1. In Indonesia, regulators have indicated that positive economic developments such as an acceleration of the country’s GDP to 5.3% by year-end 2017, would boost Indonesia’s insurance premium growth with growing demand in property and engineering insurance following a larger government budget for infrastructure.
Carsten Scheffel, AGCS Board Member and Chief Regions and Markets Officer for Asia said:
“The Asian market is of utmost importance to AGCS, and in 2016 contributed 5% to our overall global premium volume of EUR 7.6 billion. Since we opened our Asia regional office in Singapore in 2012 the region has been the one of the fastest growing markets delivering double-digit growth rates. We see a number of significant opportunities in Asia, with the increasing number of large infrastructure projects in railways, ports, subway lines, and a growing focus on environment liability. These all require expertly tailored insurance programs with significant lead insurer capacity, one of the core strengths of AGCS.”
One Belt One Road: A unique opportunity for insurers
In China, Engineering, Entertainment and Environmental Impairment Liability (EIL) solutions offer the most promising opportunities in the corporate insurance segment. In the Engineering segment, AGCS seeks to capitalize on opportunities arising from the One Belt One Road (OBOR) Initiative. It is predicted that over USD 8 trillion will be invested in infrastructure projects across 65 countries which will drive demand for large-capacity construction and engineering insurance solutions. According to industry estimates, insurance premium potential from OBOR infrastructure construction projects to date is about USD 7 billion. The AGCS Engineering team in Greater China is led by Mark Chan.
AGCS expects strong demand for environmental liability (EIL) and entertainment insurance, too. EIL cover offers solutions for companies which are held liable for pollution or environmental or health damage even in cases where they had not acted negligently. Recent regulatory enforcement of environmental law in China will undoubtedly increase the need for EIL protection.
Entertainment is another growth sector for AGCS in China: China’s domestic film production has tripled from 2005-2015 and is now ranked third in the world behind USA and India. Allianz is a global leader and expert in entertainment insuring film production and live events for more than a century.
In Indonesia, AGCS operates as a division of Allianz Utama in Jakarta and will initially focus on financial lines and engineering products alongside the country’s robust economic growth and increased investment into infrastructure. Major appointments include Megasari Manurung, Underwriter for Financial Lines, and Indrajaya Wardhana, Underwriter for Engineering. Both experts are based within Allianz Utama in Jakarta.
Patrick Zeng, AGCS CEO Hong Kong, said: “This is an exciting time for AGCS, as we expand not only into new markets but also our range of products. The growing interconnectivity and complexity of risks affecting businesses have also led to the rising demand for newer offerings such as EIL, crisis management, entertainment and cyber as recent high profile cases have increased the awareness of the necessity of such coverage.”
Growing demand for International Insurance Programs and new offerings
The Beijing and Jakarta offices further increase the capability of AGCS to meet increasing demand for International Insurance Programs (IIP) which are a core competence and AGCS will look to grow this offering across Asia as more Asian businesses expand internationally as a result of globalization. International clients for IIP benefit from a larger Asian AGCS network. AGCS currently manages 2,500 IIPs globally, including 6% from Asia.
Mark Mitchell, Regional CEO for AGCS Asia, said: “We have seen an increase in demand for global insurance programs in Asia, and China and Indonesia are no different. AGCS’s strong technical expertise and global network makes us attractive partners for companies looking to expand operations beyond their borders. Our multinational customers from the United States and Europe also benefit from our expanded network in Asia for their own global program set-up. As risk exposures grow in multitude and complexity, having a global partner for international insurance coverage can really facilitate smooth and efficient operations for businesses worldwide.”
1 Allianz Economic Research