OLDWICK, N.J.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--
A.M. Best Co. has released a special report on the Latin American insurance market. This report briefly describes the insurance and reinsurance markets in Latin America, and some of the reasons for recent growth in these markets. The report also summarizes governmental oversight of insurance and reinsurance in each Latin American country. Latin America, consisting of Mexico, Central America and South America, now constitutes a significant and growing portion of worldwide economic activity. With a land area of about 7.9 million square miles, Latin America’s estimated population is 557 million, with a gross domestic product (GDP) of $5.6 trillion in 2012, according to the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
Latin America’s economic growth rate was about 5.7% for 2010, 4.0% in 2011 and 1.8% in 2012, according to the IMF, but the rate varies widely among countries in the region. While Brazil’s GDP is believed to have grown 0.9% in 2012, other South American countries are believed to have experienced growth between 1.9% (Argentina) and 6.3% (Peru). Paraguay was the only country estimated to have experienced negative GDP growth in 2012. Growth also is widespread in Central America, with projected rates ranging between 1.6% in El Salvador and 10.7% in Panama.
Economic growth in recent years has led to a significant reduction in the extreme poverty level of many Latin American countries. According to World Bank data, the number of people living on less than $4 per day declined from 243 million in 2002 to 179 million in 2008 (or about 30% of the total population), and further improvement is anticipated.
Latin America’s growing economies and the resulting decline in poverty are creating increased demand for insurance and reinsurance products and services. That aspect, combined with relatively low investment returns in mature economies, has generated increased interest among global insurance and reinsurance providers toward Latin America. Concurrent with this trend has been the global shift toward stricter regulation of financial services companies. There also has been a marked increase in regulatory activity to support the insurance and reinsurance markets. In some instances, the focus is geared toward protecting local insurance interests or furthering national economic goals unrelated to insurance and reinsurance.
For a full, complimentary copy of this report, please visit http://www3.ambest.com/bestweek/purchase.asp?record_code=212418.
A.M. Best Company is the world's oldest and most authoritative insurance rating and information source. For more information, visit www.ambest.com.
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- Latin America
- Central America
Mariza Costa, 908-439-2200, ext. 5308
Senior Industry Research Analyst
Rachelle Morrow, 908-439-2200, ext. 5378
Senior Manager, Public Relations
Jim Peavy, 908-439-2200, ext. 5644
Assistant Vice President, Public Relations