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Internet short-term health insurance sees rapid growth in H1

By Chen Meiling | | Updated: 2020-09-01 17:08
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Internet short-term health insurance saw rapid growth in the first half of 2020 despite the overall decline of the Chinese internet property insurance market, a report showed.

From January to June, 72 property insurance companies conducted internet property insurance business, with premiums reaching over 37.11 billion yuan ($5.44 billion) in total, down 2.73 percent year-on-year, according to a report released by the Insurance Association of China on Monday.

The negative growth appeared after declining during 2016-17 and rebounding during the 2018-19 period.

Internet automobile insurance kept shrinking, but the number of online clients and their activation increased. Premiums of internet auto insurance dropped 24.34 percent to about 11.17 billion yuan, while the number of installation and page views of insurers' apps grew 22.34 percent and 49.55 percent, respectively.

Part of the reason for the decreasing premiums was the increasingly fierce competition in the auto insurance market, according to the report.

The proportion of internet non-auto business rose up to about 70 percent, with premiums up to 25.94 billion yuan, a year-on-year increase of 10.92 percent. Growth declined 49.2 percentage points than during the same period in 2019.

Internet short-term health insurance grew rapidly, which also reaped the most premiums among all categories from January to June. Premiums of accident health insurance surged 35.76 percent to 15.53 billion yuan.

According to the association's survey of the top 60 most popular and best-selling internet insurance products during the first half of this year, 25 were health insurance products, which contributed 57.33 percent to the overall premiums of the 60 products. Among them, premiums of accident insurance occupied 6.78 percent, down 23 percentage points year-on-year.

Besides the convenience in online selling, property insurance companies enhanced supply-side structural reform of insurance products during the COVID-19 pandemic to meet people's demand for health management, which promoted rapid development of internet health insurance.

But the demand for accident insurance, which relates closely to tourism and outings, saw an obvious decline, resulting in the shrinkage of the internet accident insurance market. The report predicted internet tourism insurance will still face downturn pressure in the short term.

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