OIC’s secretary-general, Dr. Suthiphon Thaveechaiyagarn, presided over the opening ceremony of the co-workshop on "Car Insurance Management of the Year 2018" between the Office and the non-life insurance companies on November 18, 2018, at the Cavalli Casa Hotel in Ayutthaya. The Secretary-General addressed on the topic of "Promoting Sustainable Growth for the Insurance Sector" to all attendees who were from central and regional OIC executive officials, the groups of Legal and Lawsuit, Benefit Protection, Products Regulating, Office of Compensation Fund and Regional Insurance Promotion including the management of non-life insurance companies and the Thai General Insurance Association. Saying that “It is a good sign that all parties use this forum in exchange ideas and strengthen good relationship including listening to each other. It is expected to understand the same way of faster compensation management in car insurance disputes”. In addition, it will enhance the synergies that help driving Thailand's insurance industry to sustainable growth, under the 3rd insurance development plan of 2016-2063. It is expected that the Thai insurance system will grow sustainably and be trusted by the public under the four main strategies i.e. enhance the Insurance Industry's potential, enhance knowledge and accessibility to insurance of public, create a conducive environment for competition, and strengthen the insurance infrastructure.
Car insurance has played an important role in driving Thai non-life insurance business as seen from the premiums received above a hundred thousand million baht since the year 2012 or accounted for more than 75% of total premium. The insurance business including auto insurance needs to increase competitiveness and be ready in all aspects such as management, risk management, compensation management, and technology application, especially the development of insurance products amidst the digital age and current government strategy’s Thailand 4.0. It is evident that advanced technology is rapidly evolving, and has been added to the human capacity to bypass the past limitation in creating and developing new ones. Consequently, consumer behavior changed completely such as mobile-phone shopping. The non-life business sector has had to change its way of doing business in every dimension to conform to digital technology.
As technology and the digital world continue rolling, non-life insurance business needs to increase its competitiveness and adapt to the changing technology, innovation development is needed to fast and all-around accelerate business. Nowadays, people with more knowledge of insurance makes the company provide faster and more convenient services, especially digital channels for communication and transactions through electronic channels. The company can develop the insurance products to meet the changing global context, for example, likes being diversified and responsive to the needs of consumers, the development of the "open or close" choices of the car insurance policy under present consumer behavior through the mobile phone while driving, etc. This created the opportunity to the alternative access the market to the public as the premium is cheaper than of the normal pattern. The key challenge for the non-life insurance industry is the readiness of the digital industry. This makes the difference depended on the awakening to create the potential of each company. Should any company is not prepared or ready, it will inevitably be less advantage of the business.
On the solution to the complaints about the lack of benefits in using car under repair, the OIC has appointed a working group headed by Mr. Thanupat Ratanapoolchai, Deputy Secretary-General of Legal, Cases and Benefits Protection to improve the terms and conditions of the car insurance policy with the representatives from the Thai General Insurance Association. The meeting concluded the preliminary determination of the rate of benefit from non-using the car in three main groups. The first group is the personal car of fewer than 7 seats which will be paid not less than THB 500 per day. The 2nd group is public service cars up to 7 seats which will be paid of not less than THB 700 a day. The 3rd group is any car with more than 7 seats which will be paid of not less than 1,000 baht per day.
The Office also provided insight guideline as mentioned in the OIC proclamation on the rules, procedures and conditions of reimbursement or remedy under Non-life Insurance Act BE 2559 (2016) and emphasized to have all insurance companies strictly comply, with warning of the penalty on deferring the compensation payment at the high daily penalty rate of THB 20,000, but totally not exceeding THB 500,000 Baht throughout the time of violation (Section 37 and 88 of the Insurance Act BE 2535-1992).
Applying mobile application technology to the insurance system is to have a central database system for the non-life insurance company to be used as a medium in providing insurance services. Such services include the purchase of insurance, insurance policy renewal, insurance coverage period review and check, list of garages affiliated with the insurance company, and the emergency telephone number or claim channels to facilitate the public. Although the originally collided incident scheme of "collision, claim exchange and departing" implemented by the insurance company could serve public and well manage, it does not meet today's consumers' needs under changing technology. As this similar facilitation of the non-life insurance companies has well served as a response to government policy of Bangkok and suburb traffic problem-solving integration, the Office will continue the projection in 2019 onward to lead the drive of this matter by issuing the necessary proclamation as the concrete mechanism.