AXA Global leaders visit PH, a key insurance market

AXA’s Global CEO Thomas Buberl and AXA International Markets CEO Hassan El-Shabrawishi were in Manila recently, recognizing the Philippines as a key market globally. “The Philippines has a historically large uninsured and underinsured population,” Buberl pointed out. “We want to address this by providing services and solutions that are more attuned to Filipinos’ always-evolving needs, throughout their unique life journeys – may it be for income protection, health, or savings and investments. This also means offering more inclusive packages that are affordable and yet, do not compromise on giving the protection they need.”

Growth in insurance is indicative of economic growth as confirmed by numerous studies. A recently published study in the Asian Financial Review states that a long-term causality runs from insurance penetration and density to per-capita GDP, which suggests that better performance of the insurance industry significantly contributes to economic well-being.

However, the Philippines’ insurance penetration is currently at less than 2% despite record per capita insurance spending in 2022.  This is far below the global insurance penetration average of 7.3%

Being chronically underinsured has had real consequences for Filipinos, despite the passage of the Universal Healthcare Act, and the fact that government healthcare funds absorbed 50.3% of healthcare spending in 2021. Out-of-pocket (OOP) healthcare spending remained a major problem for ordinary Filipinos. In that year alone OOP health spending was 453.23 billion pesos, according to the Philippine Statistics Authority.

While underinsured Filipinos are poorly prepared for health crises, the Philippines is also frequently cited as one of the most natural disaster-prone countries in the world. This is an unfortunate distinction the World Bank confirmed again last year. The situation is only going to get worse with global climate change. 

Buberl explained, “It is this high-risk, low-insurance spending scenario that makes Filipinos highly vulnerable to financial losses in the face of life’s uncertainties. At AXA, we firmly believe that while life is full of risks – the future shouldn’t be one of them. This is why we are doubling down our efforts to protect customers and empower them to achieve financial stability and turn their dreams into more attainable life goals.”

Only insurance provides a financial safety net to make sure that a crisis such as the death or severe illness of a breadwinner and the destruction or even theft of a property does not spiral into financial ruin. “This underscores the role and purpose of AXA in the Philippines – to protect more and more Filipinos. This visit by our global leaders shows AXA’s commitment to the country as a key insurance market,” said AXA Philippines CEO Bernardo Rafael Serrano Lopez.

In line with our purpose, acting for human progress by protecting what matters, AXA Philippines is constantly innovating its products to best serve the wider Filipino community. "Each market is not only unique, but dynamic. For this reason, we have to constantly reassess the relevance of our products, both locally and globally, and make the necessary changes. In the last three years for the Philippines alone, we have not only introduced more flexible products, we have also launched a mobile app, Emma by AXA PH, to manage transactions related to AXA policies. The Emma app also serves as a partner for customers in health and financial wellness, offering key features that allow them to conveniently search for accredited hospitals, clinics, and doctors, book teleconsultation services or adjust the amount of their investment funds, among other services. These simple yet innovative solutions are now more accessible with Emma and have radically transformed the way we interact with customers,” concluded El-Shabrawishi.

A pioneering and leading insurance company in the world, AXA is present in 50 countries and currently provides protection for 95 million customers worldwide. AXA Philippines provides a comprehensive suite of life and non-life insurance products, as well as professional needs assessment, to ensure that AXA customers and their loved ones are prepared to face any crisis.

To know more about AXA Philippines and which plan fits your life goals and needs, visit

Visiting AXA International Markets CEO Hassan El-Shabrawishi (left) and AXA Global CEO Thomas Buberl (Middle) on-stage with AXA Philippines CEO Bernardo Rafael Serrano Lopez (right), as they address the AXA Philippines team during their employee townhall in Manila.

AXA Global CEO Thomas Buberl (left) and AXA International Markets CEO Hassan El-Shabrawishi (right) discuss how best to address the unique needs of the Philippine market, and how to make insurance more inclusive in the country.

AXA Philippines management and staff pose with AXA Global CEO Thomas Buberl and AXA International Markets CEO Hassan El-Shabrawishi during the recent Manila visit of the two global leaders.

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