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Other international markets


In Africa we have been represented by our subsidiary Hannover Life Reassurance Africa (HLR Africa) for more than 20 years. From our location in Johannesburg we traditionally write predominantly individual term life reinsurance business in South Africa and most English-speaking countries south of the Sahara.

In general terms, the market is enjoying strong growth and becoming visibly more competitive. Nevertheless, we were pleased to be able to further enlarge our market share in the financial solutions segment in the year under review. Thanks to our long-standing expertise and our service, we continue to be a sought-after business partner. For the first quarter of 2012 we are already expecting to close an initial new business financing arrangement and we see further good growth prospects in this segment for the full year.

Given Africa’s heavily rural character and the scope for improvement in its infrastructure, we are also working together with a number of primary insurers to promote direct and online sales of insurance products with the aid of automated underwriting systems. This involvement is intended to open up access for a broad sector of the population to appropriate life and health insurance protection.

HLR Africa generated gratifying gross premium income of EUR 163.5 million (EUR 149.5 million) in the year under review, of which EUR 129.6 million was retained for own account. This produced an operating profit (EBIT) of EUR 8.8 million (EUR 11.9 million), corresponding to an EBIT margin of 6.8%.

Central and South America

The markets in this region are supported directly by our local service office in Mexico City as well as by our team in Hannover, which also bears responsibility for risk assessment and underwriting. We successfully make up for this geographical distance to our clients through regular on-the-spot visits.

The business volume was boosted to EUR 156.4 million, an increase of 19.0% relative to the previous year’s figure of EUR 131.4 million. Of this amount, a premium volume of EUR 31.5 million stemmed from the markets of Central America (including Mexico). The remaining EUR 124.9 million was generated in South American markets (including Brazil). Profitability in this region continues to be satisfactory.


Asia represents a promising growth market for our company and is served directly by local branches and service offices. Our life branches in Kuala Lumpur and Hong Kong operate as regional centres with overarching coordination and service functions.

Hannover Rückversicherung AG Malaysian Branch bears market responsibility for the ASEAN countries as well as South Asia. In the Indian market we continued our strategic corporation with GIC Re. Support for this region and the cooperation with GIC Re are handled by our service office in Mumbai.

We have achieved a high degree of market penetration in the Indian reinsurance market and have written treaties with the major primary insurance players. Not only that, we are known among our clients for innovative product solutions and we rank among the leading providers in the field of online and direct sales.

The premium volume in these markets amounted to EUR 25.9 million (EUR 21.4 million). Profitability was again pleasing in the year under review.

Our branch in Hong Kong coordinates the entire East Asian region, although direct business responsibility is limited to Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan. Reinsurance business in China and Korea is written by our branches in Shanghai and Seoul respectively. In Japan we are locally represented by our service office in Tokyo.

Along with sizeable growth throughout the entire region, China is particularly notable on account of exceptionally strong demand for reinsurance protection in the financial solutions segment. We successfully concluded a number of new transactions in the year under review and anticipate rising demand over the coming years.

Total premium income in the East Asian region amounted to EUR 308.6 million (EUR 201.6 million). The rapid pace of growth in these markets was undiminished in the year under review at 53%.

Looked at from a holistic perspective, the performance of Asian markets (excluding the Middle East) is crucially driven by the East Asian region. Here, too, we booked premium growth of around 50%, equivalent to a volume of EUR 334.4 million (EUR 223.0 million). The result for the year under review was extremely favourable.

Australia and New Zealand

We have been doing business in Australia and New Zealand for almost 20 years now through our Sydney-based subsidiary Hannover Life Re of Australasia (HLR Australasia). In these markets we write predominantly traditional risk-oriented business in the life and critical illness sectors, and we also participate in various types of disability covers.

HLR Australasia holds an insurance license and – in cooperation with an Australian direct sales organisation – offers a range of risk-oriented product solutions in the primary sector. In this segment our involvement is for the most part concentrated on occupational retirement provision, where we assume the biometric risks of mortality and morbidity. These activities deliver a growing contribution to the total business volume and are a key factor in our healthy risk diversification.

HLR Australasia further enlarged its business volume in the year under review, with occupational retirement provision on a group basis (in the form of superannuation funds) as well as individual primary insurance business serving as the main drivers of growth.

Gross premium increased by 25.7% to EUR 407.9 million (EUR 324.4 million). Owing to a poor biometric risk experience, the operating profit (EBIT) fell sharply to EUR 8.7 million (EUR 23.7 million), corresponding to an EBIT margin of 4.4%. The underwriting losses were offset by a non-recurring tax credit, as a result of which net income after tax showed a gratifying profit of EUR 25.3 million.


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