In Korea, investment in overseas assets regarding variable insurance policies has exceeded KRW 10 trillion in total for the first time since the global financial crisis in 2008.
According to the Korea Life Insurance Association, the net value of foreign investments based on variable insurance premiums was KRW 10.5 trillion as of end-March 2017, up nearly KRW 800 billion from three months ago.
In fact, this can be explained by two key factors: 1) customers are increasingly turning their eyes to global assets as return on investments in the domestic market remains poor, and 2) in the current low interest rate environment, policyholders are intent on making the most of tax exemption associated with variable insurance by having more high-yielding foreign assets in their
In respect of variable insurance-based investments, Mirae Asset Life Insurance has the largest overseas assets of KRW 3.6 trillion, followed by PCA Life Insurance with KRW 1.9 trillion. The two insurers are set to merge later this year. When combined together, their foreign investments reach KRW 5.5 trillion, accounting for 53% of the total.