Life insurance: Like pouring money down the drain

Only 8% of Vietnamese population purchases life insurance, much lower than that in other countries. Poor customer care could be the main reason behind people’s unwillingness to make this investment.

Buyers at an insurance company. (Photo: SGGP)

Buyers at an insurance company. (Photo: SGGP)

A head honcho of a Canadian insurance brand in Vietnam assessed that the Vietnamese life insurance market has huge potentials with a population of over 90 million and an average per capita income of more than US$2,500 per year.
As a result, many people would be coerced into buying life insurance solely to help out their acquaintances who are insurance agents, with very few actually do their own research on packages available.
There are cases where people terminate contracts with big brands for not receiving info on the company’s business activities and their insurance premiums, as well as the lack of after-sales policies and general customer care.
A large number of insurance consultants try to meet their quota without paying much mind to doing their jobs right. They would often leave out terms that could be detrimental to customers when consulting them. Therefore, disputes are very likely to occur, leading to lawsuits and leaving big firms discredited.
According to the Vietnam Insurance Association, when an insurance agent is found to have violated buyers’ interests, they would be blacklisted but insurance firms are ultimately the ones to take responsibility and protect such interests.
Additionally, insurance companies put out nominal interest rates of 7% -8% per year, but the actual benefits customers receive are quite low.
There are also cases where insurance companies are dishonest about their annual business results, including financial statements, parent company profits and associated funds, which are important for customers to know because they concern the interest and benefits they receive when signing an insurance policy.
Insurance is strongly encouraged in developed countries, as experts believe it can enhance people’s quality of life tremendously with only a small amount of money put aside each day (VND30,000-40,000; about US$1.29-1.72).

By Thi Hong – Translated by Tan Nghia

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