Radu MANOLIU, Deputy General Manager, CREDIT Europe Asigurari
The insurance market will follow the global trend of decline, although it will not be equally affected as the mature Western markets; in the absence of emphasis and perpetuation of the current global financial crisis, the one aspect that could really destabilize the Romanian profile market could only be represented by the unwanted withdrawal from Romania of the big insurers.
XPRIMM: How do you think the Romanian insurance market will develop
Radu MANOLIU: The probability that adverse effects of the current
misfortunate global financial enviroment at the end of 2008 will also
propagate throughout 2009 is very high. I consider that the insurance
market will follow the global trend of decline, although it will not
be equally affected as the mature Western markets; in the absence of
emphasis and perpetuation of the current global financial crisis, the
one aspect that could really destabilize the Romanian insurance market
could only be represented by the unwanted withdrawal from Romania of
the big insurers.
XPRIMM: What are the objectives that the company you represent has
set for 2009?
R.M.: CREDIT EUROPE Asigurari-Reasigurari (C.E.A.R.) aims to be among
the first 10 players of the profile market, at the end of 2010, and this
goal implies a substantial increase of the scale of business throughout
the year 2009. Regarding the development of lines of business, we want
to increase the share of housing insurance, of civil liability and accidents
insurance in the total portfolio of products. In terms of distribution
structure, it is expected that at the end of the respective year, the
intermediaries will represent at least the second channel of distribution
of the company.
XPRIMM: Which do you appreciate the main utility of an insurance policy
is, in the current global macroeconomic context?
R.M.: In the current global macroeconomic context, I consider that
the utility of insurance policies should be reassessed by all categories
of clients and potential clients, as a result of a deeper understanding
of the stability that contracting various types of insurance can give
to an individual, to a household, to a business or even to a whole country
- in the latter respect, the example of an unwanted natural disaster
of large proportions and of a large territorial extent is very eloquent.
XPRIMM: What are the strengths of the company you represent, in front
of the competition?
R.M.: In terms of such a competitive market, the only way for C.E.A.R.
to follow in order to achieve success, as a company that started from
zero, consists of organizing the activity on efficiency criteria, and
adopting underwriting politics that allow generating a portfolio where
the predominante types of insurance are those of the classes recognized
as profitable. In this latter respect, C.E.A.R. is very competitive -
including terms of costs - as for all types of non-motor insurance,
it is more than flexible for larger business; on the other hand, the
company wishes to be recognized as a promoter of the true underwriting
principles, always rating depending on the risk profile. In another order
of ideas, the C.E.A.R. clients have non-stop access to a call-center,
dedicated to claims solving, as well as to innovative insurance related
services: road assistance (announcing relatives / friends, immediate
repair or sheltering the car, the accommodation of passengers, compensation
of the expenses related to travelling to destination / home and to the
ones for the repair unit for lifting the repaired vehicle, as well as
providing an exchange vehicle outside the country) and home care (consisting
of interventions of installers, electricians, locksmiths etc.).
XPRIMM: How does the management of CREDIT EUROPE view the collaboration
with the insurance intermediaries, under the conditions in which their
share on the market is in a continuous growth?
R.M.: The experience accumulated by the group in other countries
has attracted our attention, since the beginning, to the fact that an
insurer cannot become an important player of the local profile market
without extensively collaborating with intermediaries, especially brokers,
and our experience last year confirms that this aspect is fully valid
for Romania, too. In this sense, our main goal for 2009 is to increase
the number of partnerships with intermediaries, in parallel to the accentuated
development of the already existing ones.
XPRIMM: What do you consider to be the main threat for the Romanian
R.M.: As it is known, the current world financial crisis is a general
threat to the entire Romanian economy; however, I consider that the effects
of the crisis will substantially affect the Romanian insurance market
only when (possible but not certain) the Romanian economy will register
alarming rates of unemployment. On the other hand, though, even if we
live this pessimistic scenario, I hope the economy will redress quickly
enough to register no irreparable consequences on the Romanian insurance
market. Besides the effects of the crisis, I think that the limited degree
of control of the insurers on the motor insurance segment continues to
represent the main risk factor of the Romanian market, on medium and
long term - and when I say control, I am not talking only about the costs
corresponding to the spare parts and to the manual labor, but also about
the more accurate establishment of the risk profiles of the policyholders
who change insurers (this is a troublesome issue, approximately done,
for the time being - in the absence of a common database to contain information
on claims registered throughout time by all persons and legal entities
that have benefited from insurance policies starting with a given moment),
in order to allow the implementation of the bonus-malus system from the
moment of underwriting - so that the application of as accurate as possibe
rates to determine the short-term separation of the caring insured from
the careless ones and, on medium term, the change of attitude and behavior
of the latter.
Editor: Oana RADU
| Published on 27.02.2009