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Life insurance in Ireland continues to grow

Staff writer |
A new report by Timetric’s Insurance Intelligence Center (IIC) predicts a positive outlook for life insurance in Ireland.

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Growth is expected to record a forecast period CAGR of 8.3% by 2019.

According to the report, the life segment’s gross written premium is forecast to increase from EUR36.4 billion ($48.3 billion) in 2014 to EUR54.2 billion ($62.3 billion) in 2019, namely due to decreasing unemployment and increasing life expectancy among the Irish population.

During the review period (2010–2014), the Irish life insurance segment posted a CAGR of 7.0%, reaching EUR36.4 billion ($48.3 billion) in 2014.

Timetric expects declining unemployment to be a key driver for the Irish life segment. The unemployment rate decreased from 13.9% in 2010 to 11.3% in 2014. Economic recovery and an increase in labour supply supported employment growth.

Furthermore, in January 2016, the Ministry for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation initiated an action plan aiming to create 50,000 jobs over the course of 2016, which will lead to an increase in the sales of insurance policies.

Ireland’s aging population was a key driver of the life insurance segment during the last five years, and is expected to remain so up until 2019. The Irish population aged 65 years and above increased from 11.3% of the total population in 2010 to 12.3% in 2014.

This figure is expected to reach 15.2% by 2025. Moreover, the life expectancy of the country’s population rose from 72 years in 1990 to 78.7 years in 2014 and will lead to an escalation in premium costs.

Irish citizens aged above 66 are eligible to receive a state pension, which was EUR230 per person ($250) per week in 2014.

However, the Irish government plans to increase the retirement age to 67 years in 2021 and to 68 years in 2028 – a move that is expected to support the segment, as employees will seek better retirement pension products with benefits provided by private insurers.

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