“Since we are a life insurance company, the effectuation of the Korea-EU FTA will not have any immediate impact,” said Kim Young-jin, the president and CEO of PCA Life Korea. He added, however, as the Korea-EU FTA has gone into effect, the British life insurance company is paying keen attention to the possible impact of Solvency II. Following are the excerpts from an interview with him.
Q: Could you introduce your current business in Korea?
A: PCA Life is a British life insurance company with 160 years of financial experience and expertise. We provide comprehensive financial consulting services, ranging from mortality life insurance to retirement life plans.
Since the launch of the Korean branch in 2002, PCA Life has actively introduced and marketed products that focus on retirement plans, given that few retirement plans existed in Korea.
Starting from our first retirement planning campaign “What Is Your Pension Estimate?” in 2005, which was also the first of its kind in the Korean insurance industry, to our “PCA Magic Number” campaign in 2009, PCA Life has so far launched six retirement planning campaigns.
Chief distribution officers of PCA Life are an exclusive agency channel “FC (Financial Consultant) Channel,” a corporate agent channel “GA Channel,” and a bancassurance channel “BA Channel.” PCA Life has numerous products that meet the various needs of customers, such as whole life insurance, variable annuities, and variable universal insurances.
Q: What specific impact do you think the Korea-EU FTA will have on your business?
A: Since we are a life insurance company, the effectuation of the Korea-EU FTA will not have any immediate impact. However, from a long-term perspective, there is the possibility that financial service areas, such as insurance products, which the EU has a competitive edge in, will actively enter the Korean market.
Furthermore, Solvency II, the regulation designed to reinforce the protection and risk management of policy holders, will take effect in 2013. As the Korea-EU FTA has gone into effect, we are paying keen attention to the possible impact of Solvency II. In preparation for any possible outcome, we will enhance risk management systems and improve investment strategies.
Q: How do you evaluate the potential of the Korean market for your business in the future?
A: For the PCA Group, Korea is a meaningful market with remarkable growth potential. Even though the aging of the society is taking place at a breakneck speed due to the shrinking birthrate and increasing average life span, only a fraction of the population are currently preparing for retirement. PCA Life has been steadily focusing on the potential of the retirement market since entering Korea. PCA Life is striving to provide systematic financial plans as well as non-financial plans by offering not only realistic after-retirement insurance plans designed to help customers have a stable source of finance after their retirement, but also life plans for “activities customers can do after retirement.” There has been fierce competition in the domestic retirement market since a deluge of insurers and financial institutes entered. Against this background, PCA Life firmly believes that it is an obligation of the leading insurer to define reasonable retirement concepts and offer realistic solutions.
Q: Please introduce your management philosophy along with the vision of your company.
A: Under the corporate management philosophy of “We Will Listen to Your Hearts,” we constantly communicate with employees while listening to their hearts. Based on this philosophy of communication, PCA Life has striven to achieve the goal of becoming “the most reliable retirement planner” by listening to the voices of customers and helping them prepare for retirement. PCA Life will go back to basics and think about what it can do to help customers achieve their dreams after retirement. As a member of the PCA Group, PCA Life is confident that it will become a reliable partner to its customers, taking care of them during their retirement life. We hope that you continuously pay keen attention to what changes we will bring to the Korean retirement market.