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Jul 2020



MENA: Saudi insurers dominate list of listed insurers in the region

The total market capitalisation of the top 20 publicly listed insurers in the MENA region amounted to about $11.6bn.

Middle East: COVID-19 will permanently change the way wealth managers deliver advice and serve clients

COVID-19 will fundamentally change the way the wealth management industry in the Middle East operates, according to a new report released by Oliver Wyman and Morgan Stanley.

Outlook on GCC insurance markets revised to negative

AM Best has revised its outlook on the GCC insurance markets to negative from stable, citing the economic downturn across the region and an expected lower insurance demand as the two main drivers behind the decision.

Bahrain: BIBF to launch virtual platform

With self-development in business continuity amid COVID-19 gaining importance, the Bahrain Institute for Banking and Finance (BIBF) has announced the launch of its ‘BIBF+’ online platform in July, an initiative that aims to upskill local cadres during these uncertain times, by developing their skillsets and career paths through an interactive virtual environment.

Egypt: Insurance sector grows by double digits in 1Q despite COVID-19

Insurers operating in Egypt posted premiums of EGP9.43bn ($582.8m) during the first quarter of this year, marking a 15.6% growth over the corresponding quarter last year, in spite of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Egypt: Regulator suspends issuance of new broking licences

The Financial Regulatory Authority (FRA) has approved a 12-month moratorium on the issuance of new licences for insurance and reinsurance brokers, according to FRA chairperson Dr Mohammed Omran.

Egypt: World Bank provides $400m to boost universal health insurance system

The World Bank’s board of executive directors has approved a $400m project to support Egypt’s Universal Health Insurance System (UHIS) as the North African country struggles with rising numbers of new coronavirus cases.

Morocco: Falling stock prices and dividend moratorium expected to hit insurers' results

The fall in the prices of companies listed on the Casablanca Stock Exchange, combined with the decrease in dividends to be distributed for the 2019 financial year are expected to weigh heavily on the financial results of insurers this year.

Morocco: Atlanta and Sanad to merge

The boards of two Moroccan insurers, Atlanta and Sanad, have agreed to the terms of a merger between the two insurers.

Oman: OCCI proposes unified insurance policy for private education

The Oman Chamber of Commerce & Industry (OCCI) has recommended the introduction of a comprehensive insurance policy, ‘Standard Unified Insurance Protection Policy for Private Education’, to offer privately-run schools, nurseries and related facilities coverage, including consequential losses and business disruption stemming from insured Nat CAT and negligent human actions, including risks posed by pandemics such as COVID-19.

Saudi Arabia: CCHI introduces more COVID-19 support measures

The Council of Cooperative Health Insurance (CCHI) has announced more initiatives aimed at helping the beneficiaries, health insurers and health service providers, as part of its ongoing support to enable the health sector to cope with COVID-19.

Turkey: Milli Re outlines opportunities in insurance market

In line with higher level of awareness about rights and obligations and the increased tendency to resort to litigation in society, demand for liability insurance is expected to expand in Turkey, said Milli Re in its 2019 annual report.

UAE: Profits of foreign insurance branches grow faster than those of listed insurers in 2019

The total profits generated in the UAE for 2019 amounted to AED1.6bn ($435.7m) for listed insurers and to AED620m for foreign branches, according to an analysis by Badri Management Consultancy.

UAE firms fear spike in payment defaults as pandemic disrupts business

Corporations in the UAE expect increased delays in payments from customers, a growing risk of default and an overall weakening in business performance as the country copes with the disruptive impact of COVID-19, according to trade credit insurer Atradius’ latest payment practices barometer survey.

UAE: DIFC's reinsurance sector grows by 17% to nearly $2bn in 2019

DIFC has announced sustained performance in the reinsurance sector.

UAE: Spate of fires expected to fuel reinsurance premium hikes

Reinsurance premiums may rise by 20-40% at the height of the summer, especially for buildings covered with combustible cladding, said industry players.

UAE: Financial inclusion rate stands at 85%

The majority (85%) of UAE residents, aged 15 years and above, are users of at least one formal financial service, while 15% have no access to formal financial services, according to a survey by the Central Bank of the UAE (CBUAE).

UAE: Strategic partnership introduces no-code technology to accelerate digitisation

Dubai-based boutique and corporate innovation accelerator Sidani Innovative Management Services (SIMS) and Zurich-based technology provider Innoveo have formed a strategic partnership to help the regional (re)insurance ecosystem rapidly adopt innovative technologies and successfully implement digitisation initiatives. 


Growing risk of pharma supply chain disruption

Healthcare systems around the world face a number of vulnerabilities, one of which is the risk to the global pharmaceutical supply chain.

Insurers expected to invest heavily in cryptocurrency insurance

With the cryptoasset and blockchain markets growing rapidly, new research from Evertas, the world’s first cryptoasset insurance company, reveals 88% of senior insurance executives see this market as attractive for insurers over the next five years.

Cyber losses soar, but firms spend more on security

Cybercrime is on the rise, and so is the threat to business said the Hiscox Cyber Readiness Report 2020. The fourth edition of the annual report found cyber losses have risen nearly six-fold worldwide in the past year.


Egypt: Kuwait's Aman Takaful Insurance re-applies for licence

Kuwait’s Aman Takaful Insurance has submitted a new request to the Financial Regulatory Authority (FRA) to enter the Egyptian market, said FRA vice chairman Reda Abdel Moaty.

Malaysia: Etiqa launches takaful legacy plan for Maybank clients

Saudi Arabia: Gulf Union to take over Al-Ahlia

Gulf Union Cooperative Insurance recently signed a binding merger agreement with Al-Ahlia for Cooperative Insurance to acquire all issued shares in Al-Ahlia through a share swap without any cash payment.

Saudi Arabia: SAMA rejects distribution of AXA Cooperative proposed cash dividend

The Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority (SAMA) has rejected the distribution of cash dividend to AXA Cooperative Insurance shareholders for the fiscal year 2019. 

Saudi Arabia: Bupa proposes to increase its stake in Bupa Arabia

International health insurer Bupa proposes to increase its stake in Bupa Arabia by 4% to 43.25%, following an agreement to acquire a portion of Nazer Group’s stake in Bupa Arabia.

UAE: Watania launches online underwriting portal

The National Takaful Company (Watania) has launched a digital underwriting service allowing customers to secure a policy in “less than 4 minutes”. 

UAE: Two agencies team up to back exports through Islamic trade credit insurance

Etihad Credit Insurance (ECI), the UAE’s federal export credit company, has partnered with Dubai Islamic Economy Development Centre (DIEDC) to boost UAE exports through shariah-compliant export credit solutions.