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Austria's insurance firms continue to commit to internationalisation

20 May 2012

Last year foreign business accounted for almost 40% overall. Austrian insurers believe there is further potential, above all in Eastern Europe.

Despite the backdrop of economic turbulence, the Austrian insurance industry managed to achieve a further expansion of its international business in 2011. Successful growth was particularly pronounced in Eastern and South-Eastern Europe: more than 100 subsidiaries generated EUR 6.4 billion in premium income in over 20 CEE and SEE countries in 2011, following on from EUR 5.9 billion the year before. This represents almost 40% of the premium income achieved in Austria of EUR 16.5 billion.

Around 60,000 staff members have direct or indirect employment at over 140 insurance providers in Austria; in Eastern Europe there are around 40,000 employees in over 100 subsidiaries. Overall the Austrian insurance industry saw a slight decrease in premium income last year of 1.7% to EUR 16.5 million. Total insurance payments in 2011 amounted to EUR 12.3 billion – a plus of 4.4% against the previous year according to The Austrian Insurance Association, VVO .

According to preliminary forecasts, total premium income in 2012 is set to rise by around 1.3% to EUR 16.7 billion, whereby the potential in the CEE and SEE region is far from being fully utilised.