Emerging markets power on

We expect growth in the emerging market economies to strengthen moderately in the coming two years.

And, with the shift in economic power from the west to the east continuing, we believe China and the rest of emerging Asia will remain the key engines of insurance sector growth to 2020 and beyond.

Key takeaways

  • We forecast that aggregate emerging market growth will accelerate to around 4.9% annually in 2019 and 2020, from 4.7% this year.
  • Our projection is based on anticipation of gradual recovery of some economies currently mired in crisis (Argentina and Turkey) or experiencing sluggish growth (Brazil, South Africa).
  • Emerging Asia continues to outperform other regions, with China and India set to remain above the 6% growth threshold in 2019 and 2020.

The widening "growth gap" between emerging and advanced economies that has been observed since the early 2000s has narrowed since 2008. Nevertheless, emerging markets will continue to grow faster in the foreseeable future and, with the shift of economic power from west to east continuing, emerging Asia (in particular China) will drive global insurance market premium growth for many years to come.

GDP growth gap between emerging and advanced markets (actual and forecast, in orange)

  • According to our forecasts database, emerging markets accounted for 5.6% of global premiums in 2000, and an estimated 18.8% in 2017.
  • China and emerging Asia are major contributors.  China's share of global premiums increased from 0.8% in 2000 to 9.7% in 2017.
  • We forecast that the contribution of emerging markets to global premiums will increase to 28% by 2028, with China alone counting for 16%.

Read more in the full report.