The Zurich Insurance Keen to Re-Enter China With a Joint Venture as Rules Relaxed for Foreign Financial Firms

by swisscham in Bank, Finance, Insurance

Zurich Insurance, SwitzerlandÕs largest insurer, is seeking a joint venture partner in China, as the countryÕs recent easing of financial sector rules, tempts it to return to the mainlandÕs life insurance market which it quit five years ago. ÒWe have ambitions to grow in mainland China, which is a very big market with huge business opportunities,Ó Jack Howell, chief executive for Asia-Pacific at Zurich Insurance, told the South China Morning Post in an exclusive interview. The insurer previously had a 20% stake in New China Life Insurance, which it sold in 2013. It currently operates a wholly owned general insurance company, Zurich General Insurance Company (China), which offers property, corporate and other commercial risk insurance. ÒWe have ambitions to grow in mainland China, which is a very big market with huge business opportunities,Ó Jack Howell, chief executive for Asia-Pacific at Zurich Insurance, told the South China Morning Post in an exclusive interview. In November 2017, China announced that it would relax the 50% cap on foreign ownership in life insurance joint ventures so that overseas investors could own a majority 51% stake in three yearsÕ time, with the cap completely removed two years later.

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