In global terms Panama ranks as a small but dynamic national market for insurers. According to the Superintendency of Insurance and Reinsurance of Panama, general insurers wrote gross premiums of $791m in 2014, 6.2% more than in 2013, while life/health insurers wrote gross premiums of $552m, up 10.8%. Total insurance penetration was 3.07% that same year, with total density at $342 per capita. Though these figures are high in the context of Central America, where penetration varies from a low of 1.2% per capita in Guatemala to 2.2% in El Salvador, they remain low by the standards of OECD member states such as Chile (with penetration of 4.2% of GDP and density of $678 per capita), Spain (5.6% and $1591), Portugal (6% and $1716) and the US (11.6% and $5499). With significant room for organic growth, the micro-insurance, health insurance and life insurance markets continue to offer the best opportunities.
This chapter contains an interview with Mauricio de la Guardia, CEO, Internacional de Seguros.