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Bulgaria Insurance Markets Reflect Financial Crisis

Date: 23.03.2010

A Bulgaria Insurance Report has concluded that the country's industry is facing a difficult period in both the life and non-life sectors.

The report, published by Business Monitor International (BMI) warns that the Bulgarian insurance market is crowded, and predicts some rationalization by companies over the coming year.

The market has also been directly affected by the onset of the global and regional economic difficulties, according to the report.

In terms of gross written premiums for the first half of 2009, the three largest non-life companies were: Bulstrad (Vienna Insurance Group), DZI General insurance and Lev Insurance, with market shares of 15.6, 14 and 11.2 %, respectively.

In the same period of 2009, leaders in the life segment were Allianz Bulgaria Life, DZI and UNIQA Life, with market shares of 21, 16.1 and 10.9 %.

Analysis of the different types of insurance traded showed that, the largest non-life lines in 2008 were motor insurance, compulsory motor third party liability (CMTPL) and fire and diverse risks. These accounted for 43, 26 and 14 % of total non-life premiums.

Bulgarian operators DZI, Lev Insurance and Armeec increased their market shares within the fire insurance segment to 14,1%, 11,0% and 10.4 %.

By analyzing figures to date, the BMI report has forecast total premiums for 2009 of BGN 1 718 M, a figure that includes non-life premiums of BGN 1 491 M and life premiums of BGN 229 M.

The report further projects that in 2014, the corresponding figures will be BGN 3 086 M, BGN 2 322 M and BGN 764 M respectively.

The BMI report noted that, although there were some negative trends for most of 2009, Bulgaria’s insurance business sector generally proved more stable than many neighboring countries.

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