The Ascent of "Insurtech" in China

Authored by Zhan Hao (zhanhao@anjielaw.com), Song Ying(songying@anjielaw), Sharif Hendry(sharifhendry@anjielaw.com), Yu Dan(yudan@anjielaw.com) and Chen Jun( chenjun@anjielaw.com) at AnJie Law Firm.

ZhongAn, a Chinese insurance company selling online insurance products, is representative of a new wave of “insurtech” companies; insurers engaging with online distribution models (or tech companies foraying into insurance) that recognize the gains to be had by entering this emerging market. The China Insurance Regulatory Commission (NDRC) has been forthright in recognizing and encouraging innovation centered on new types of insuranceproducts and online distribution on a national level, and on the back of this favorable regulatory environment, companies and investors are following suit. 

 

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Anti-monopoly Enforcement Trends in Healthcare Industry

 Authored by Michael Gu (michaelgu@anjielaw.com) and Sihui Sun at AnJie Law Firm

The healthcare industry has gradually become one of the key focal points of the anti-monopoly law enforcement in China. As of the end of July 2017, the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) and the State Administration for Industry and Commerce (SAIC) have concluded and published nine anti-monopoly penalty cases, targeting 16 healthcare enterprises with a total fine of about RMB 134 million since the implementation of the Anti-Monopoly Law in 2008. We foresee the two law enforcement authorities potentially raising a more forceful ‘anti-monopoly windstorm’ in the healthcare industry in the future and possibly investigating and penalizing in succession certain well-known pharmaceutical and medical device enterprises. Through the investigation and handling of a series of cases, the NDRC and SAIC have accumulated a significant amount of experience in the healthcare industry sector. Healthcare enterprises are likely to face a more serious anti-monopoly compliance challenge.

 

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A Comparative Insight into China's Risk Oriented Solvency System

Authored by Zhan Hao (zhanhao@anjielaw.com) and Sharif Hendry (sharifhendry@anjielaw.com) at AnJie Law Firm

As of today, the recently adopted ‘China Risk Oriented Solvency System’, also known as “C-ROSS”, is the only regime by which a Mainland insurer’s capital adequacy is regulated. Following the implementation of China’s 13th Five-Year plan in 2016, the China Insurance Regulatory Commission (CIRC), as the industry’s sole regulator, published an outline of the plan, including several goals relating to the reformation, innovation and regulation of the insurance industry. This draws interesting comparisons with the overseas capital adequacy regimes of other major jurisdictions, notably with Solvency II in the EU. Both these reforms mark a fundamental shift towards a risk-based, market-oriented approach to estimating capital requirements, being geared as they are towards individual insurance entities, rather than the previous "one-model-fits-all" approach.  This is expected to lead to greater market efficiency in managing risk, and enhance consumer protection. For China, it marks a renewed focus on both volume and value for the domestic insurance sector, implicitly recognizing that better risk management includes all drivers of product profitability, including product terms and conditions, guarantees, pricing and underwriting . As a result, the transition towards fully implementing, supervising and enforcing the C-ROSS regime is already having far reaching repercussions. 

 

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A Closer Look at the Chinese Cyber Risk Insurance Industry

Authored by Zhan Hao (zhanhao@anjielaw.com) and Sharif Hendry (sharifhendry@anjielaw.com) at AnJie Law Firm
 
Recent “ransomware” attacks worldwide, including greater China, have once again brought to the fore the nascent yet potent threat “cyber risks” present as an all-encompassing enterprise risk management challenge to corporations worldwide. Concordantly, the raft of operational consequences that can potentially cascade from an attack, including the liability of directors and officers for errors and omissions, reputational and market valuation knock-on effects, and regulatory compliance issues1, present an ever burgeoning opportunity for insurers to expand further into this potentially lucrative new line of business.
 

 

A Rational Approach towards Abuse of Collective Market Dominance in Antitrust Law

Authored by Dr. Zhan Hao (zhanhao@anjielaw.com) and Song Ying(songying@anjielaw.com) and Tian Chen (tianchen@anjielaw.com)at AnJie Law Firm

1.Introduction

The concept of abuse of collective market dominance (“Collective Abuse”)stems from Article 102 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (“TFEU”), (formerly Article 82 of the European Community Treaty) and was first acknowledged by the EU General Court in 1992.

According to Article 102 of the TFEU, Collective Abuse refers to two or more undertakings abusing their concentrated market dominance based upon some kind of connection between/among them. However, since there are no specific applicable rules for this concept under EU competition laws or guidelines, and with the concept being applied in only a few cases under EU competition law practice, from an antitrust perspective, the relevant competition issues have to some extent not been solved. Hence, there is still plenty of theoretical and practical space to discuss those issues. For these reasons, this article is written from three aspects of this topic as follows, with the intention of shedding light on the rationale behind this concept, and the precautions to take when applying Collective Abuse.
 

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Upcoming Regulations for Investors in Insurance Companies

Authored by Zhan Hao (zhanhao@anjielaw.com) and Dong Xin at AnJie Law Firm

In China, amidst fierce competition amongst insurance companies, more and more investors, both domestic and foreign, are striving to enter this market. Relevant regulations concerning investment limits and the qualifications for shareholders to invest in Chinese insurance companies are a continuing focal point for potential investors.

 

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Declarations of Death in Personal Insurance Contract Cases

Authored by Dr. Zhan Hao (zhanhao@anjielaw.com) and Kang Xin at AnJie Law Firm.

A declaration of death is a civil declaration that may be granted when a natural person is missing from his or her usual residence and his or her whereabouts have been unknown for the requisite period set by law, and for which an interested person may apply to the people's court. Article 23 of the General Principles of the Civil Law of the People's Republic of China provides that:

"Under any of the following circumstances, an interested person may apply to the people's court for the declaration of a citizen's death: (1) if the citizen's whereabouts have been unknown for four years; or (2) if the citizen's whereabouts have been unknown for two years after the date of an accident in which he was involved."

 

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Decoding the Exposure Draft for Amendments to MOFCOM Rules on Antitrust Review

Authored by Zhan Hao (zhanhao@anjielaw.com) and Song Ying (songying@anjielaw.com) at AnJie Law Firm

On 8 September, 2017, an exposure draft of amendments to the Provisions on Antitrust Review of Concentrations (the “exposure draft”) issued by the Ministry of Commerce of PRC (the “MOFCOM”) was released for soliciting public comments. 

The Provisions on Antitrust Review of Concentrations (the “Antitrust Review Provisions”) were originally published on November of 2009. The purpose of amendments this time is understood to make the Antitrust Review Provisions more functional, comprehensive and improved by summarizing the past experience and best practice of MOFCOM since 2008.

 

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Deregistration--Severest Antitrust Punishment on the Trade Association

Authored by Michael Gu (michaelgu@anjielaw.com) and Sihui Sun at AnJie Law Firm

According to a press release2 published by the National Development and Reform Commission (“NDRC”) on its website on 10 July, China’s Zhejiang Provincial Price Bureau3 (“Price Bureau”) recently concluded the investigation of a cartel case organized by a local trade association. In this case, 17 paper manufacturers reached and implemented a horizontal monopoly agreement under the organization of the local trade association in Hangzhou - Fuyang Paper Manufacturers Association (“Paper Manufacturers Association”). The 17 paper manufacturers were fined a total amount of RMB 7.78 million, accounting for 1% of their sales value in 2016. Furthermore, it is worth noting that the Paper Manufacturers Association, which played a critical and leading role in organizing and facilitating the aforementioned conspiracy, was forced to de-register by the Price Bureau for its wrongdoings. This is the first time an antitrust authority in China has ever invoked Article 46(3) of the Anti-Monopoly Law (“AML”) to de-register a trade association.

 

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The Wisdom behind the Selection of Chinese Institutions

Authored by Arthur Dong (dongxiao@anjielaw.com) and Darren Mayberry (darren.mayberry@anjielaw.comat AnJie Law Firm

As discussed in the first post in our series, the Chinese arbitration system has matured over the last several years. Foreign parties should favor arbitration clauses in their China deals. Even so, this brings us to yet another question. Should a dispute resolution clause for a China-centered contract select a China-based institution to host the arbitration? Or should a non-Chinese party instead take refuge with regional offshore powerhouse institutions?
 

Answers will of course vary according to the contemplated contract's particular circumstances. Nonetheless, Chinese arbitration institutions offer two clear advantages. Chinese courts will facilitate China's institutional interim measure requests. Also, Chinese institutions offer international service without the cost premium. We explore how these advantages each can impact a dispute. We book-end the advantages with reassurances that Chinese institutions offer truly international arbitration. 
 

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