The Singaporean life insurance industry garnered a total of S$2.2bn ($1.9bn) in weighted new business premiums in H1 2023, down 16.7% compared to last year, according to the Life Insurance Association of Singapore (LIA Singapore).
The decline was driven by ongoing economic uncertainty, with a rise in inflation and living expenses crisis.
For the period ended 30 June 2023, uptake of single-premium policies declined by 52% to S$691m versus S$1.4bn in the year-ago half.
Annual premium policies uptake was S$1.49bn, up 26.3% from S$1.18bn in H1 2022.
LIA Singapore noted that the rise in annual premium policy uptake signifies the rising prioritisation to meet protection requirements in the region.
Nealy 72,000 Singaporeans and permanent residents adopted new integrated shield plans (IPs).
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Total new business premiums for individual health insurance for H1 2023 totalled S$206m, a surge of 32.1% compared to the year-ago half.
Claims payouts to policyholders and beneficiaries by the life insurance industry was S$6bn, up 1% versus last year.
For the group life and health segment, in-force premiums rose by 15% to S$2.17bn in the second quarter of 2023.
LIA Singapore president Dennis Tan said: “As we face a volatile economic landscape with no clear signs of headwinds abating, the life insurance industry must embrace agility and continue to actively listen and cater to the ever-changing demands of consumers.
“The life insurance industry will also continue to explore digitalisation initiatives while cultivating a pool of talent, aimed at bolstering operational efficiencies and elevating customer experiences.
“Our central focus remains on addressing the financial and protection needs of Singapore’s community as we navigate the global headwinds and challenges.”