Sun, September 26, 2021

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Covid insurers plead for patience as delayed-payment complaints soar above 3,000


Thailand’s non-life insurance industry has asked customers to be patient over delayed Covid-19 payments, saying insurers are being overwhelmed by claims.

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Total Covid claims exceed 9 billion baht this year, according to the Thai General Insurance Association (TGIA), which comprises all 56 non-life insurance companies.

“Most of the claims have been made during July and August. We estimate that by the end of September the total claim amount could reach Bt12 billion,” said TGIA president Anon Wangwasu.

Insurance claims during the Covid-19 outbreak are about 10 times higher than normal, he said.

Insurance companies need to prepare at least Bt3-4 billion to cover Covid-19 related claims, he added.

“Some companies are starting to sell their assets, shares and bonds as well as increase their capital to secure enough cash to honour the claims."

However, this did not indicate financial vulnerability, as the companies normally retain shares, bonds, assets or other investments that generate higher returns than cash, he added.

 

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“Currently total investment asset of the loss insurance industry amounts to Bt334 billion, 29.3 per cent of which is cash deposits, 23.9 per cent is in shares, 15.82 per cent in debentures, 6.62 per cent in funds, and the rest in other forms of investment.”

Meanwhile, the Office of Insurance Commission (OIC) reports that as of September 3, it had received 3,145 complaints of insurance companies failing to pay Covid compensation on time.

“Most of the complaints are about ‘Jer Jai Jop’ insurance, which promises to pay immediately upon testing positive for Covid-19,” said OIC secretary-general Suthipol Taweechaikarn.

Customers can submit complaints online at https://complaintportal.oic.or.th/ppms/login, via the 1186 hotline or at the OIC head office on Ratchadapisek Road.

Published : September 10, 2021