“This was primarily due to the decrease in gross investment income and the impact of the update of discount rate assumption of reserves of traditional insurance contracts,” said Yang Mingsheng, chairman of China Life, in the result statement.
Gross investment income fell 23 per cent to 108.2 billion yuan, due to fluctuations in the capital market.
Net premiums rose 17.6 per cent to 426.2 billion yuan, giving China Life the largest share of the country’s life insurance market, at almost 20 per cent.
“Despite all the problems accompanying advancement and development, the fundamental trend of a slower but stable performance with good momentum for economic growth in China remains unchanged, and golden opportunities for the development of the insurance industry still exist,” Yang said.
China Life had been sitting out the explosive growth in the country’s wealth-management products, as dozens of small, aggressive insurers have sprouted since 2014 and cornered the market of high-yield financial products.