STATISTICS: BELARUS, 1H2015: Devaluation of the BYR against the "hard" currency had a negative influence on the main types of insurance that can be bought in foreign currency

The growth and strengthening of the crisis phenomenon due to the fall of oil prices (editor's note: On August, 2015 the cost of Brent crude oil fell below USD 42.87/per barrel, so once again the price for the Brent crude oil is close to its lowest level in six years), as well as the devaluation of RUB, the extending of sanctions for Russia (which is the main trade partner of the Republic of Belarus) and the fall on the Chinese stock market led to the low economic growth in Belarus last year.

So, from the beginning of 2014 until the analyzing period, the devaluation of the Belarusian Ruble (BYR) against the USD amounted to more than 40% and against the EUR to more than 20%, which directly affected the volume of the business and the welfare of the citizens of Belarus.

Thus, the growth of the domestic insurance market by 10.48% in the first half of 2015 looks more or less optimistic compared with the evolution of other sectors of the economy.

However, analyzing the market's results by taking into account the devaluation of the BYR against the EUR, one can observe that the gross written premiums decreased by 9.59%, which had a negative influence on the main types of insurance that can be bought in a foreign currency.

For example, the Green Card insurance segment reported a 14.13% growth in local currency, while in EUR this business declined by 6.61%.

"The real situation due to devaluation of BYR is reflected in the statistical data of Green Card insurance, this policy can be paid in EUR and without postponing the payment, which allows us to compare subscribed premiums. During the first quarter of 2015 the volume of gross written premiums of Green Card insurance decreased to EUR 8.44 million compared with the same period last year - EUR 9.22 million or with EUR 800,000 less. Moreover, in the first quarter of 2015, despite the GWP decrease, the number of signed Green Card insurance contracts have increased. In my opinion, this was the result, of the lower demand from trucking companies to sign insurance valid contracts for a long time due to increase of price in BYR for this type of insurance and reduction of number of orders", commented Andrei DANILCHYK, General Director, StrakhExpertGroup.

In the reporting period, the Ministry of Finance has taken measures to combat the cases of fraud in the bancassurance system. The results of these measures has become evident in the results of the first half of 2015, so gross written premiums in the life insurance line decreased by 44.17% and accident insurance down by 45.79% (those are main types of insurance sold via banks).

Another trend of Belarusian insurance market in the first half of 2015 was that the total value of claims paid by Belarusian insurance companies increased by 48.95% compared with similar period in 2014, almost four times compared with premiums.

Access www.xprimm.com and download the 1H2015 Belarusian insurance market statistics.

More about the Belarussian insurance market evolution in 1H2015 will be available in the forthcoming issue of XPRIMM Insurance Report 1H2015, to be released on October, 18th, on the occasion of the Baden-Baden XPRIMM Reception (Kurhaus Casino, Runder Saal, 18:30 - 20:30 hours).

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