Thomas Buberl, the CEO of AXA Global and Hassan El-Shabrawishi, CEO of AXA International MarketsBusiness Features

AXA execs emphasize role of insurance in times of crises

During his recent visit to Manila, Thomas Buberl, the CEO of AXA Global, underscored the importance of making insurance accessible to all. He highlighted that the Philippines stands as one of the insurer’s key global markets.

Citing statistical data, the company pointed out that insurance penetration in the Philippines remains below 2%, despite recording a significant per capita insurance expenditure in 2022. This figure falls well below the global average insurance penetration of 7.3%.

“We want to address this by providing services and solutions that are more attuned to Filipinos’ always-evolving needs, throughout their unique life journeys — may it be for income protection, health, or savings and investments,” Buberl said. “This also means offering more inclusive packages that are affordable and yet, do not compromise on giving the protection they need.”

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Out-of-pocket (OOP) healthcare expenses continue to be a significant burden for ordinary Filipinos. OOP health expenditures amounted to 453.23 billion pesos, according to the Philippine Statistics Authority.

High risk and low insurance coverage

The Philippines is consistently recognized as one of the world’s most disaster-prone nations, a distinction reaffirmed by the World Bank just last year.

“This combination of high risk and low insurance coverage renders Filipinos highly susceptible to financial losses in the face of life’s uncertainties,” said Buberl.

AXA underscored how insurance offers a financial safety net, ensuring that a crisis such as the death or severe illness of a breadwinner, or the destruction or theft of property, does not lead to financial ruin.

“Each market possesses not only uniqueness but also dynamism. For this reason, we must continuously reassess the pertinence of our products, both locally and globally, and implement necessary adjustments,” said Hassan El-Shabrawishi, CEO of AXA International Markets.