Published on February 25th, 2017 | by Subhash Nair0
The State of the Motor Insurance Industry in Malaysia According to PIAM
Earlier this week, Persatuan Insurance Am Malaysia (PIAM) announced the latest developments in the general insurance industry. As expected, there was good and bad news. Sadly, growth reached an all-time low in 2016 of 1.1%, shrinking from its previous record low of 2.2% in 2015.
Motor insurance, the largest sector of the industry, was heavily hit thanks in no small part to poor car sales last year. It grew by just 0.8%. The marginal growth rate in the motor class is indicative of the downturn in the automotive market last year. New vehicle sales plunged 13% to 580,000, going below 600,000 cars for the first time since 2009.
On the claims paid out by insurance companies, the overall Net Claims Incurred Ratio for the industry dipped slightly, but still amounted to a staggering RM5.02 billion. PIAM has consistently promoted safe driving and road safety through its various campaigns held during the General Insurance Day commemoration and other public events.
Motorists involved in accidents can continue to rely on the Accident Assist Call Centre for help. This is a toll-free 24/7 nationwide hotline 1800-22-1188 (or 15-500) which arranges for emergency roadside assistance like towing services and also provides information on insurance claims enquiries.
On a positive note, the industry recorded a decline of 20% in motor theft counts. The total number of stolen vehicles for all classes in 2016 amounted to 19,307 a reduction from 24,154 in 2015. PIAM commends the Police (PDRM), Customs and other law-enforcement agencies for their steadfast commitment and collaborative efforts working closely with the Vehicle Theft Reduction Council, which was set up by PIAM.
The industry is also working on a Fraud Intelligence System to combat insurance fraud in Malaysia. This is an industry-wide initiative with the participation of all member companies. It uses advanced data analytics to detect fraud in the market.
On human capital and talent attraction, PIAM’s General Insurance Internship for Talent (GIIFT) project took in 154 undergraduates for 3-month internships and signed on 19 into full-time positions within the industry so far.
Movin forward, PIAM expects the operating environment for 2017 to be as challenging as the previous year given the ongoing uncertainties in the external envirment and a less than buoyant economy. A low growth rate is likely to prevail for the year ahead.