Insurer sees growth in Islamic products
KUALA LUMPUR: Great Eastern Holdings Ltd, the biggest life insurer in Malaysia, is aiming for Islamic products to make up a third of its sales from new policies in five years as it taps a younger and more affluent Muslim population.
Great Eastern and its partner Koperasi Angkatan Tentera Malaysia Bhd received a so-called Takaful joint-venture licence from the Malaysian central bank last year, allowing them to offer Islamic insurance products.
The insurer started selling Takaful or Islamic products in December, which it said is still an "insignificant" part of its business.
"The younger population is going to work, consuming and thinking about insurance products," chief investment officer Yoon Mun Thim said at a briefing in Singapore yesterday.
"That is the segment and the future that we are looking to participate in" and become a "significant growth engine".
The Singapore-based insurer is seeking growth in the Islamic insurance market in Malaysia, where 61 per cent of the 26 million population is Muslim, according to data from the Department of Statistics.
Great Eastern also set up its Islamic headquarters in Malaysia to expand its sales of the products, it said.
Great Eastern said its new business embedded value, which measures the long-term profitability of new sales for insurers, rose 24 per cent in Malaysia in the first half to S$70 million (RM172.2 million). - Bloomberg
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