|By Iris Lai|
|A.M. Best Company, Inc.|
Family takaful, or Islam-compliant insurance, could spark potential growth for investment-linked products in
The company initiated a special linked product offering spiritual fulfillment, protection and savings to "pique the interest of potential customers," Mithani said. Prudential BSN also offers a series of investment-linked products combined with family, health and education protection.
New business contributions from investment-linked products increased to
Prudential's joint venture partner,
Mithani said the company believes in broad-based distribution for boosting growth. With 8,500 Prudential agents and 1,600 Prudential BSN direct agents, Mithani stressed the importance of having a strong and professional sales force. The company also forms bancatakaful partnerships with established financial institutions such as
Mithani said Prudential BSN managed to achieve profitable underwriting in four years, with the focus on efficient distribution and operation. Strong risk management in underwriting and claims is also essential, he added.
In investment, Mithani said "the Islamic debt security market poses the greatest challenge in terms of availability." Prudential BSN invests largely in equities and Islamic debt securities.
Shariah, or Islamic law, compliance is a key difference of takaful's operating model, he said.
Mithani said "we see an increasing need for Shariah protection and investment plans," since the launch of Prudential BSN in 2006.
The government has played "a prominent role" by laying down Islamic finance foundations, market liberalization and encouraging takaful operators to accelerate development.
Shariah-linked products presented 17% of new business mix for Prudential's life business in
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