American International Group (AIG), a leading global insurance organisation, said on Wednesday that it is poised to increase its exposure in the Chinese market as it embarks on a new journey.
“China will be a strategic market for us and it will generate huge business potential,” said Lisa Sun, president and CEO of AIG Insurance Company China.
Customers want new channels rather than traditional insurance brokerages, she said. To satisfy their growing demand, Sun said AIG would become “more agile” by working with domestic digital players and peer insurance companies.
The underwriter plans to bet big on personal accident and health insurance business, and on helping Chinese companies “going-out,” through risk engineering and outbound travel insurance.
The company sees the opportunities of the Belt and Road Initiative. Domestic corporations are expected to have invested up to US$5 trillion in BRI countries by 2030 and BRI projects outside of China will have generated an estimated US$28 billion in commercial insurance premiums.
Unexpected risks have emerged in some places due to natural disasters as well as political, economic and other factors. Awareness of such risks has visibly increased among Chinese companies, not only among those who have suffered losses. They are becoming more proactive in risk management and starting to engage insurers at the earlier stages when developing overseas projects, Sun added.
Looking forward, AIG expects higher demand for non-traditional security management, especially in aerospace, marine cargo, marine liability, trade credit and surety.
Founded in Shanghai in 1919, the insurer expanded its business in China steadily in the years following 1992. It is one of the largest wholly-owned foreign property & casualty insurers in China, with nearly 20 percent of the country’s total foreign P&C market share.
As of 2018, AIG China has been working with more than 400 partners and brokers, and has a gross premium written of 1.85 billion yuan (US$270 million).