Report: demand, aging and technology drive changes in insurance

Changing customer demand, the aging trend and technological revolution are driving the Chinese insurance services industry. [Photo/VCG]

Changing customer demand, the aging trend and technological revolution are driving the Chinese insurance services industry to transform and upgrade, according to a newly released report.

In the past, Chinese people normally sought insurance services after a health incident or an accident happened; with the enhancement of health awareness, they are now turning to manage their health and seek medical consultation in a more active way, said the report released on Tuesday by Ping An Insurance, China’s largest insurer by market value.

Meanwhile, the increase of a graying population in the country and the development of advanced technologies such as artificial intelligence are prompting the industry to reform so as to meet the special needs of the elderly group and become more convenient and efficient, he said.

The insurance services industry has turned from the previous extensive growth to more regulated and higher-quality development, said Xu Xian, head of the Department of Risk Management and Insurance at Fudan University.

“As the number of elderly people in the country grows, insurance services will need to make adjustments to cater to the needs of the aging population. It will be a trend that more customized insurance services for the elderly will be rolled out,” he said .

“Advanced technologies will also fuel the industry’s upgrade. In the future, digital insurance will be applied in every aspect, from product design and marketing to claim services,” he added.

According to the report, more than 200 million claims were settled by four insurers under Ping An Insurance last year, with total compensation pay-outs amounting to over 280 billion yuan ($40.4 billion). That translates to over 600,000 claims and 770 million yuan per day.

“When we look at different categories of insurance, health insurance is growing at a relatively fast pace,” Xu said. “This is a demonstration of our Healthy China strategy.”

China launched the Healthy China 2030 blueprint in 2016, with the aim of enhancing national well-being and propel global health governance.

According to the scholar, compensation pay-outs of health insurance claims have seen faster growth compared to those of property insurance and life insurance claims. The proportion of these kinds of insurance claims hit the highest at 25.81 percent in 2021.

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