On 11 April 2018, the People’s Bank of China (PBOC) announced 11 measures (FS Measures) aimed at further opening China’s financial services sector to foreign participants.

Of these 11 Measures, 4 were specifically aimed at China’s insurance sector (Insurance Measures) . PBOC stated that these 11 FS Measures would be implemented “…in the coming months, and no later than year end”. The 4 Insurance Measures are:

  1. Total foreign equity holding limits in China life insurance companies will be lifted from its current cap of 50% to 51%, and within 3 years there will be no cap at all on foreign equity ownership of China life insurance companies.
  2. Qualified foreign investors will be allowed to conduct insurance agency and loss-adjusting business within China.
  3. Current limitations on the authorised scope of business of foreign-invested insurance brokers in China will be abolished to allow foreign-invested insurance brokers to enjoy the same authorised scope of business currently enjoyed by domestic-invested insurance brokers; and
  4. Foreign investors in foreign-invested China insurance companies will no longer need to maintain an authorised Representative Office in China for 2 years prior to making any such investment.