THE INSURANCE INDUSTRY posted higher premium income in 2018 driven by robust growth across all sectors, the Insurance Commission (IC) reported.

Preliminary data based on unaudited reports submitted by life and non-life insurance firms as well as mutual benefit associations (MBA) to the IC showed the industry’s total premium income grew 11.67% to P290.15 billion as of end-2018 from P259.82 billion posted a year ago.

Broken down, bulk of the industry’s premium income came from the life insurance industry at P228.61 billion as of end-2018, up 12.89% from P202.5 billion the previous year.

According to Insurance Commissioner Dennis B. Funa, 75% of life insurers’ premium income or P170.22 billion was generated from the sale of variable life insurance products, 14.33% higher from P148.88 billion a year ago.

Meanwhile, premiums collected from traditional life products grew 8.91% to P58.4 billion from the P53.62 billion tallied in 2017.

The non-life insurance sector, on the other hand, saw its written net premiums in 2018 at P50.83 billion, 4.63% higher compared with P48.58 billion a year ago.

“[F]ollowing the trend in the past reporting period, the motor car business comprised more than half of the total premium income of the non-life insurance sector,” Mr. Funa said. Premium income from car insurance grew 8.55% year-on-year to P26.9 billion last year from P24.72 billion in 2017.

The MBA sector reported a 22.42% increase in total contributions or premiums to P10.7 billion in 2018 from P8.74 billion the prior year.

Meanwhile, insurers posted an all-time high of P1.58 trillion in assets as of end-2018, up 1.28% from the P1.56 trillion posted a year ago.

“Despite the year-on-year slight decrease in the total assets of the life insurance sector, the industry’s overall assets reached an all-time high,” Mr. Funa said.

The life insurance sector continued to hold the bulk of the industry’s total assets with P1.26 trillion or 79.75% of the total.

Meanwhile, life insurers and MBAs posted assets amounting to P230 billion and P90 billion, respectively.

“For the recent years, the industry posted the highest amount of premiums collected as of yearend 2018,” statement from the IC read.

In terms of net worth, the industry likewise posted a record high of P337.37 billion in 2018, an increase of P17.07 billion from P320.3 billion a year ago.

Life insurers reported a combined net worth of P219.91 billion in 2018, up 8.61% from P202.48 billion in 2017. On the other hand, non-life insurance companies had a net worth totalling P82.33 billion last year, a 5.66% decrease from P87.27 billion in 2017.

The MBA sector’s fund balance grew by 14.99% year-on-year to P35.13 billion from P30.55 billion.

The industry likewise saw growth in net income, posting a combined bottom line of P37.43 billion in 2018 from P36.39 billion in 2017. — K.A.N. Vidal