No further licenses for foreign insurers this year, regulator says

Construction is under way at the Thilawa Special Economic Zone.  Three Japanese insurers have so far been granted licenses to operate in the country’s SEZ, including Thilawa.
Construction is under way at the Thilawa Special Economic Zone. Three Japanese insurers have so far been granted licenses to operate in the country’s SEZ, including Thilawa.

No additional foreign insurers will receive licenses to operate in Myanmar’s special economic zones this year, said the industry regulator.
The Myanmar Insurance Business Supervisory Board has so far given the green light to three Japanese insurers to operate in the SEZs and will consider granting further licenses from next year, Chairman Dr Maung Maung Thein told The Global New Light of Myanmar.
Firms “will only be entitled to apply for the license when they are in line with the criteria” prescribed for the sector, said Dr Maung Maung Thein, who is also Deputy Minister for Finance.
Corporate social responsibility and contributions to the development of the country’s insurance sector and economic growth are among factors considered, he said.
Of the three insurers permitted to operate in SEZs, Sompo Japan Nipponkoa Insurance Inc became the first to be granted an operating license. The firm this week launched its operation in the Thilawa Special Economic Zone, the country’ first SEZ, the first phase of which is set to open in September.
“The (three Japanese insurers’) presence in Myanmar with representative offices for around two decades resulted in them winning the licenses,” the deputy minister told the media at the kickoff ceremony.
As one of the requirements for the license, applicants must have had local representative offices for three years.
Insurance firms operating in the SEZs are limited to property insurance, motor insurance, marine cargo insurance, contractors’ all-risk insurance and cash transfer insurance, he added.
The licenses do not permit them to operate outside the SEZs in accord with the Insurance Law of Myanmar.
According to sources, there are currently 16  representative offices of overseas insurers in Myanmar.

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