Hanwha Life Insurance has become the first insurer of the Republic of Korea to invest in the Indonesian market after purchasing a 80 percent stake worth 130 billion Rp (11.9 million USD) in local Multicorlife Insurance in December last year.

Francis Jungseop Hyun, chief executive of Hanwha Life Insurance Indonesia, said the company is planning to rapidly expand its operations in Southeast Asia ’s largest economy.

After the acquisition, the second largest life insurer in the RoK has increased its investment in Multicorlife Insurance by 260 billion Rp and renamed it Hanwha Life Insurance Indonesia , he added.

Hyun said the company will invest another 400 billion Rp next year to expand its share in the potential Indonesian market with over 240 million people.

Park Jae-hong, head of Hanwha Life’s global business division, said Indonesia has been on the company’s radar ever since it decided to expand outside the RoK in 2000.

Hanwha Life has identified countries with high business growth potential such as China , India , Vietnam and Indonesia , Park said, adding that the company set up an office in China in 2003 and has also entered markets in Vietnam, the United States, Britain, Japan and Indonesia.

“The insurance market is expected to grow rapidly in Indonesia . It has a large population in which 70 percent are under 40 years in age. There is also an expanding middle class,” he said.

In the first half of this year, the Indonesia Life Insurance Association (AAJI) reported a rise in premium revenue of 14.5 percent to 57.6 trillion Rp from the same period a year earlier. New premium grew 7.1 percent while continued premium rose 31.3 percent. The number of insured people in Indonesia rose significantly by 54.6 percent to 87.2 million.-VNA