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UNSAR: More and more Romanians choose life insurance. How to reduce the financial protection gap of the population

In Q1 2021, Romanians chose the protection offered by life insurance more than they did in any of the similar periods in the last five years. Thus, gross written premiums for this segment went up by 11.6% y-o-y, exceeding RON 688 million (~EUR 139.8) million.

In fact, almost a third of Romanians would place their financial resources in life insurance - 6 p.p. more than in 2020, according to the latest sociological research conducted by UNSAR together with IRES. For the Romanians who have not yet taken out life insurance, the first 3 reasons to buy such a product are: higher income (35%), an unfortunate experience of an acquaintance whose family has been affected (31%) and better information about insurance benefits (27%).

However, the share of life insurance in the total profile sector in Romania is at a modest level compared to the other analyzed EU states. If in Romania life insurance accounted for about 19% of the market in 2020, with an average in Central and Eastern European countries of more than 31%, in other European countries the level exceeds 50%, which further indicates the great potential of the local market, but especially the protection gap of the population of Romania.

"The fundamental role of life insurance is to provide financial protection and long-term savings. The development of this sector could support a balanced society, less vulnerable from a financial point of view", said Adrian MARIN - President, UNSAR.

Better consumer access to protection, savings and investment instruments could lead to a stronger level of accountability and the reduction of the protection gap.

"The development prospects of the sector can be amplified especially in the context in which stimulating market consolidation policies are introduced, such as tax deductibles for life insurance with the exclusive protection component", stated Alexandru CIUNCAN - General Director, UNSAR.

The Romanian population continues to be extremely vulnerable to risks, according to the study "Life insurance, a tool for family protection", conducted for UNSAR by a group of independent experts - the results of which have already been published.

According to the analysis, for many families in Romania, the occurrence of an unwanted event (accident, illness - which can even result in death) would lead to a sharp decline in living standards. Thus, life insurance is a concrete and easily accessible solution for reducing the vulnerability of families and social imbalances, completing the protection offered by the public system.

Author: Cristian SUCA on 10.08.2021

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