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BMI View: Bulgaria's insurance market is among the least developed of the EU states we monitor and is
also less mature than most other markets in the Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) region. Low household
incomes and discretionary spending have constrained the growth of the sector, resulting in the dominance
of compulsory lines such as motor vehicle insurance in place of life insurance and other discretionary lines.
While a favourable economic climate and rising household incomes should support growth in both the life
and non-life sectors over, the expansion is likely to be at a moderate pace. Likewise, multinationals will
continue to gradually increase their exposure to the market through the introduction of new product lines,
as well as through the acquisition of smaller indigenous firms.
Key Updates & Forecasts
? In August 2016, results from stress tests conducted on Bulgaria's banking system showed the country's
banks to have stabilised since the 2014 banking crisis, and are no longer in need of state support. The
outcome has led us to improve our forecasts for credit/financial guarantee premiums and will also help to
support growth in other lines.
? Our core outlook for the wider non-life insurance market remains in place, which is for premiums growth
to turn positive from 2017 in local and USD terms following a decline of 1.4% and 5.1% respectively in
2016. Premiums will grow by 6.2% a year in US dollar terms over 2017-2020 to reach USD1.1bn,
equivalent to an annual increase of 3.2% in local currency terms.
? In the life insurance market we forecast growth of 0.3% in local currency terms in 2016, Translating to a
fall of 3.5% in USD terms to USD215mn. By 2020 premiums will have grown to reach USD278mn