Germany-based insurance giant Allianz is to commence the operation of China’s first fully foreign-owned insurance holding company, after receiving approval from the China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission (CBIRC).
Based in Shanghai, Allianz (China) Insurance Holding Company will support the growth ambitions in the country by enhancing the insurer’s strategic and financial flexibility to make the most of business opportunities and expand its investment in the market.
The approval by the Chinese regulator comes after a series of measures announced by the country’s government to open up and encourage greater investment in China by foreign insurers.
Allianz states that the approval strengthens its proposition in the country and positions the business well to capture the world’s fastest growing economy.
In light of the announcement, Allianz has appointed Sergio Balbinot as Chairman of Allianz (China) Insurance Holding Company Limited and Solmaz Altin as the company’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO).
Balbinot commented: “We sincerely thank the China Bank and Insurance Regulatory Commission for their constructive guidance and support during the preparation period. Allianz is extremely optimistic on China and we are committed to accelerating our growth plans in this strategic market. The regulatory approval for the holding company is an important landmark for our business and puts us in priority position to maximize on the opening up of the Chinese economy.”
Allianz has had a presence in the Chinese market since the early 1910s, and employs over 2,000 people in the country, offering a full suite of services.
The company states that further announcements around the establishment of the holding company following registration with the Shanghai Market Administration and Registration Bureau (SMAR) will be made in due course.
“China is a strategically important market for Allianz in the region and today’s announcement underlines that commitment. With the new holding structure in place, we are able to better serve an expanding middle class with our range of financial solutions. Allianz aims to play a larger role in China’s insurance sector and grow with the market.
“We will continue to work under the guidance of the regulator to deepen our participation in a more open financial market to support the country’s economic growth,” said Altin.