US$551m gross premiums from Singapore's captive industry

The captive industry in Singapore now accounts for 22 percent of Singapore's offshore insurance fund business, said Ong Chong Tee, deputy managing director of Singapore's Monetary Authority, speaking at a captive-themed conference on Thursday, as quoted by the Xinhua News Agency.

Gross premiums from the captive industry in Singapore were close to 750 million Singapore dollars (about 551 million U.S. dollars) last year.

In addition, a more diversified set of corporations across different industries have set up captives in Singapore, "demonstrating the versatility of the captive facility in Singapore to cover a wide range of risks," said Ong.

Singapore is the Asia Pacific region's leading captive centre. Ong believes captive insurance will be an increasing feature of Asia's new landscape ahead, with the Asian corporations to ride on the wave of growth and rising prosperity in the region.

Broker JLT said: "Singapore has a strong record and has demonstrated a commitment to the captive industry. We believe the most important element of the captive management service is the ability to work in partnership to ensure that the benefits of owning an insurance subsidiary are maximised."

However, currently, many more captives are domiciled in Bermuda, or the Cayman islands, than in Singapore.

Captives are are insurance companies set up to handle risks emanating primarily from their parent company. Among other benefits, they allow companies to access the reinsurance market.