Everyday last week delegates from all of China´s Provinces representing all sectors of China´s insurance industry were attending a seminar at the Mandarin (Xin Da Du) Hotel in Beijing to improve their knowledge of current international practices in different types of insurance and the use of modern computer technology to provide faster and more effective services for customers.
Highlighting the importance of insurance to China the Seminar was reported in both Chinese and English language programmes of CCTV (Central China Television) reaching some 800 million viewers.
The seminar was organised as part of the United Nations ongoing Programme on Insurance in co-operation with the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Economic Co-operation and the People´s Insurance Company of China and was sponsored by the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg.
The seminar received very strong support from the delegates who were all enthusiastic to learn of new practices from the international insurance, reinsurance and information technology experts which they could introduce to benefit China´s rapidly expanding need for more sophisticated insurance products and services.
The 15 experts speaking at the seminar were drawn from 11 leading international companies and other organisations and came from 7 different countries.
The delegates learnt at first hand from the foreign experts about the directions in which global developments are taking place in the world insurance industry. The presentations concentrated on six major topics.
Of particular interest to China´s insurers are the current practices and the changing structure of world Reinsurance Markets where China will be likely to more frequently transact business to provide cover for the very large projects and the new industries whose trade with the rest of the world is growing annually at record levels.
China is a country subjected to many Catastrophe Perils such as earthquakes, floods, windstorms and tsunami, and the fast developing industrial areas and growing concentration of the population in major cities is resulting in far greater values being at risk to any one incident than in the past. New solutions are needed for Chinese insurers to respond to the increasing demands which will be made upon them, and the seminar included explanations of the methodology in use elsewhere in the world and the utilization of the international insurance markets in order to cover risks with very high sums insured.
Rapid growth in China´s manufacturing and industrial sectors has resulted in this area of the economy becoming the major contributor to the growth of China´s GDP. Insurance protection against Business Interruption with loss of production and sales due to machinery breakdown and similar causes is a way that international manufacturers protect themselves against such a contingency. At the seminar Chinese insurance personnel were able to learn from the experience of international insurers and reinsurers to help them develop similar insurances suitable for China´s economy.
China is now exporting more and more goods and services to other countries of the world and as a result Chinese companies are entering into contracts for the supply of goods and services which are subject to the laws of those countries with which they trade. When things go wrong through accident or malfunction associated with the Chinese products the law in foreign countries may hold the Chinese producer liable to pay compensation. Producers may insure against such risks by means of Liability Insurance, and the operation of such insurance and the legal requirements in different areas of the world were described.
Lastly, insurance is becoming an increasingly complex and competitive business and to maintain adequate continuous up-to-date information on the insurance company´s day to day profitability and exposure to risk is no longer possible without the use of computers and sophisticated Information Technology. International experts described how information technology is being used by insurers and reinsurers all over the world to provide a better service to customers and more efficient operation and control of insurance companies.