China travel curbs take toll on Prudential

Border lockdowns  have caused Prudential's Hong Kong business to suffer

Border lockdowns  have caused Prudential's Hong Kong business to suffer

Border lockdowns  have caused Prudential’s Hong Kong business to suffer

Travel restrictions between Hong Kong and mainland China marred a strong set of results for Prudential in the first three months of 2021.

The Asia-focused pensions and life insurer said sales of its policies in Hong Kong were down 48 per cent in the first quarter, as borders with the mainland remained closed.

Though Prudential has a business in China, many customers in the country often fly to Hong Kong to buy products such as life insurance, health cover and pregnancy cover as the quality of healthcare and financial services is perceived to be better. 

But as the border lockdowns caused Prudential’s Hong Kong business to suffer, its sales in China soared by 83 per cent.

Indonesia was the only other region where Pru saw its sales fall, by 14 per cent. 

Malaysia, Singapore and the markets in Africa where the company is trying to expand its presence all saw strong growth.

Overall, sales of Prudential policies were up 17 per cent to £850million. 

The firm, which hived off its UK operations into M&G two years ago, is still considering whether to raise £1.8billion to £2.1billion from investors as it sells its US business Jackson.

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