(MENAFN Press) The Ukrainian industry has undergone key changes in terms of structure and provisions since coming into existence in 1991. The key structural changes include a decline in the number of insurance companies, while restrictions on foreign inward-investments have been eliminated entirely. The number of insurance companies decreased from 700 in 1992 to 442 in 2011, while the foreign inward-investment cap increased from 49% to 100%; at present the government applies no barrier to foreign direct investment (FDI). During the last decade, industry trends have become healthier, with higher levels of capitalization and fewer operational companies. However, the industry is developing dynamically and is predominantly controlled by the non-life insurance segment, which accounted for a significant share of the total industry during the review period. Motor insurance volumes are growing at a rapid rate and are supported by the mandatory insurance provision for motor vehicles, whilst property insurance volumes are growing in line with motor insurance volumes. These two categories account for a significant share of the Ukrainian insurance industry.
Agricultural insurance projected to grow solidly
Ukraine is one of the largest exporters of grain in the world. However, agriculture products are exposed to many natural disasters and weather risks. The country's agriculture industry incurs significant losses due to these events.
In light of this, the International Finance Corporation (IFC) is aiming to develop an agricultural insurance system to safeguard producers against weather-related risks, provide stable incomes to farmers and help to restore production against natural disasters.
The IFC is working closely with government agencies and private insurers to fund this system through public-private partnerships.
The IFC is also providing advice to private insurers and helping to develop suitable agricultural insurance policies to facilitate farmers.
This initiative is anticipated to attract new customers, expand the scope of the Ukrainian insurance industry and serve the agriculture industry.
Ukraine to introduce insurance-based healthcare system over the forecast period
Ukraine has undergone a health crisis since its independence, with a third of all Ukrainians dying prematurely.
The existing public healthcare system plays an insignificant role in the country's healthcare financing and serves to supplement government-offered health services.
Consequently, the government declared a reform of its existing healthcare system in 2009 and intends to implement an insurance-based compulsory healthcare system by 2014. In light of this, the government is seeking the help of leading private insurers to aid in the structuring and implementing of this project.
The key objective of this reform is to provide health insurance coverage to all citizens and enact compulsory provisions relating to health insurance. This reform, if implemented, is expected to substantially increase the demand for private health insurance over the forecast period.
Non-life insurers' earnings upset by negative investment incomes
The total investment income of non-life insurance companies declined during the review period as a result of the volatile stock market.
The total investment income declined from UKR6.1 billion in 2007 (US1.2 billion) to UKR3.8 million (US468.9 million) in 2011, at a CAGR of -11.1% during the review period.
The growth was affected by the volatile equity market and global financial crisis in 2009.
The negative investment income impacted the earnings of non-life insurance companies during the review period.
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