Thu, Jan 16, 2020 - Page 12 News List

FSC gives thumbs up to UBI policies for scooters

By Kao Shih-ching  /  Staff reporter

Nan Shan Insurance Co Ltd (南山產險) has won Financial Supervisory Commission (FSC) approval to work with electric scooter maker Gogoro Inc (睿能) to provide the first legitimate usage-based insurance (UBI) policies for scooter riders, the regulator said on Tuesday.

Unlike traditional vehicle insurance policies, UBI premiums vary depending on factors such as the distance measured by a vehicle’s odometer or riders’ behaviors, including their riding speed, the commission said.

Last year, the FSC asked property insurance companies to halt UBI sales, as insurers did not have adequate data on user behavior to convince the regulator that their premium calculations were precise, Insurance Bureau Director-General Shih Chiung-hwa (施瓊華) said.

“It is easy to assume that drivers who often break traffic rules are more likely to have traffic accidents and should be charged higher premiums,” a bureau official said. “However, the insurers should have the data first to prove that they are right.”

Nan Shan Insurance is to use Gogoro’s database to determine the premiums, Shih said.

As Gogoro, which offers battery swap service to its users, records how many kilometers each of its users travel per month, the insurer would have comprehensive data and avoid consumer disputes, the bureau said.

Some insurance companies used to ask riders to record their usage through mobile apps developed by the firms, which resulted in many consumer disputes, it said.

Nan Shan is expected to launch the new product in the second quarter at the soonest, it said.

Separately, the FSC said that it plans to ease qualification requirements for proxy agents for companies in the financial sector.

Under Regulations Governing the Use of Proxies for Attendance at Shareholder Meetings of Public Companies (公開發行公司出席股東會使用委託書規則), when a financial holding company, a bank or an insurer convenes a shareholder meeting, the proxy agent must hold 0.5 percent of the total number of issued shares of the company for at least one year, the regulator said.

The commission plans to relax the requirements so that proxy agents who hold 2 million issued shares would qualify, it said.

The amendment comes after the commission received complaints from shareholders, who said that the current qualification requirements have made proxy solicitation nearly impossible.

Many financial companies have share capital of more than NT$100 billion (US$3.34 billion), which requires that shareholders must hold at least 50 million of the issued shares if they want to use a proxy agent, it said.

The new rules are slated to take effect by the end of May, it added.

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