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GSIS teams up with JICA to grow insurance business

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The Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) said Friday it signed a new technical agreement with the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) to help the pension fund grow its insurance business and continue to safeguard civil servants and government assets.

“This joint effort is not just about protecting the future of government assets. With a robust insurance framework, this collaborative mission is a pro-active approach in demonstrating the GSIS commitment to building a stronger and safer nation through sustainable infrastructure practices,” said GSIS president and general manager Jose Arnulfo Veloso.

Veloso and JICA chief representative Sakamoto Takema signed the agreement in November last year.

JICA is an implementing agency of Japanese official development aid (ODA) for the purpose of supporting the socio-economic development, recovery or economic stability of developing regions. Through this collaboration, the Philippines continues to achieve sustainable development in the transport sector, while providing additional lift for the administration’s “Build Better More” infrastructure initiatives.

The Technical Cooperation Project is designed to enhance GSIS’ underwriting capabilities, improve the capacity of its insurance group to calculate replacement costs and establish accurate insurance premium rates.

The initiative will focus on developing an effective Information and Education Campaign (IEC) strategy to raise public awareness about the importance of insurance.

Following the kickoff meeting, GSIS core business sector acting executive vice president Jason Teng highlighted Japan’s exemplary public insurance system.

“There is a compelling need for us in the GSIS to harness advanced systems and innovative approaches. Consequently, we are very happy and grateful to the Government of Japan and JICA for initiating this project. We believe that we can learn a lot from Japan’s best practices in public insurance and their ability to inculcate widespread consciousness towards insurance among the general public,” said Teng.

GSIS reported a net income of P37 billion in the first quarter of 2024, a 21-percent increase from P30.75 billion a year ago. The growth in profitability was driven by strong revenues reaching P85 billion.

The state insurer’s total general insurance premium income amounted to P2.55 billion, up by 27 percent from a year earlier.

JICA insurance expert team lead Takeshi Kuwabara said: “We believe that this partnership with the Philippine Government opens up new avenues of collaboration. We see that this will help develop the insurance industry in the country and more assets will be protected from catastrophes. This will enable us to integrate Japanese know-how and expertise with the GSIS to help you build its capabilities and processes— creating better products and services to its customers. We are confident that we will help build the initiatives of the government towards a more sustainable Philippines.”

Japan is home to some of the world’s largest insurance companies. It has one of the largest and most mature insurance markets in the world bolstering some of the highest life and non-life premiums written globally.

The country’s insurance sector accounted for 4.3 percent of their GDP in 2021, nearly triple that of the Philippines.


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