HSBC Life China approved to be fully foreign-owned

Tracy Li
Life insurance arm of global banker becomes only the third in its industry allowed to take full control of its joint venture in China.
Tracy Li
HSBC Life China approved to be fully foreign-owned

HSBC Insurance (Asia) Ltd announced on Thursday it had received regulatory approval in China to take full ownership of its life insurance joint venture in the country.

HSBC Life China will be the country's third fully foreign-owned life insurer as China continues its financial reform and opening-up process.

Since January 2020, China has started to remove foreign ownership restrictions on foreign-funded life insurance companies.

AIA got the nod from industry regulators to convert its Shanghai division into a wholly-owned subsidiary of AIA Co in June 2020. In November this year, Allianz China Life Insurance was allowed to transfer the 49 percent shareholdings owned by CITIC Trust Co to Allianz (China) Insurance Holding.

Headquartered in Shanghai, HSBC Life China was formed in 2009 as a 50:50 joint venture between HSBC and the National Trust.

It now operates in 10 Chinese mainland cities, namely, Shanghai, Beijing, Tianjin, Hangzhou, Guangzhou, Foshan, Dongguan, Zhuhai, Zhongshan and Shenzhen.

The life insurer offers a comprehensive range of insurance solutions that cover annuity, whole of life, critical illness and unit-linked insurance products.

Hu Min, general manager of HSBC Life China, said the company was particularly optimistic about the pension and health insurance segment.

By 2030, the market size of China's pension industry is expected to reach 13 trillion yuan (US$2.03 billion), and the insurance sector will play an important role, he added.

Insurance business contributes about one-third to HSBC's global wealth management and personal banking business profits, or 12 percent of group profits, according to its 2021 interim report.

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