Insurance is one of the fastest growing types of financial services in Ukraine. However, with the insurance market is still reasonably attributed holding various financial "schemes" and the minimization of taxation, which largely contributes to the lack of a nationwide system of financial disclosure by members of the financial market of Ukraine. As a result, professional participants of the insurance market can not reliably estimate the real insurance market. In this case the majority of policyholders confusing variety of gross financial performance of insurance companies, which amounts classic insurance "solution" in risk-free transactions. In addition, the various financial schemes being implemented by insurance, materially affecting the financial statements of companies. As a result, violated one of the most important principles of a civilized nation - the right of citizens to obtain timely and accurate information.
In Ukraine, in fact, coexist two insurance market: the first is a civilized business, which develops the classic types of insurance to reduce the real risks are realized and the second "circuit" projects. This trend will continue as long as there will remain a high demand for insurance for tax optimization. According to Chairman of the State Commission for Regulation of Financial Services Victor Suslov, even by conservative estimates the capacity of the shadow business on the basis of insurance is about $ 400 million a year.
More "classical" schemes less
The results of the national insurance market in the first half of 2005, the Financial Services Commission commented very optimistic, focusing on the fact that there was a significant reduction in the shadow of transactions and increase the volume of the classical types of insurance.
Until now, the volume of premiums collected in the Ukrainian market, increased annually by almost half. However, in the first half of the trend has changed. According to the commission, the amount of net premiums (gross premiums less premiums ceded to reinsurers resident), collected over six months of 2005 amounted to about 3.5 billion hryvnia, which is 1.3 times less than the same period last year. A significant reduction in insurance premiums occurred in financial risk insurance (-44%) and property insurance (26%). According to Viktor Suslov, this is not evidence of the critical state of the market or some other negative phenomena. On the contrary, the chairman of the Financial Services Commission puts this fact in the merit of regulatory policies aimed at restricting the activities of companies involved in the optimization of taxation and the withdrawal of capital abroad.
Another positive factor may be the amount of premiums received from insurers directly - individuals. As a rule, physical persons not involved in the schemes, and the increase of this index over the same period of 2004 to 1.7 times (to 319.2 million hryvnia) represents an increase of confidence in the insurance market, signing more contracts related to the protection of their own population.
One of the key values of the index has insurance benefits, which still was in Ukraine is extremely low. In the first half of 2005, the value of insurance premiums amounted to 928.7 million USD, which is 472.5 million USD increase over 2004. Growth almost doubled the one hand shows the qualitative changes of the market and big payouts Insurers (thereby increasing the share of real insurance.) But on the other hand, according to the chairman of Board of CJSC IC "Vesta" Vyacheslav Chernyakhovsky, a sharp increase in net payments - a negative trend. Moreover, the negative is not the amount of payments made, and fluctuations in the indicator at times.
If the level of gross disbursements in the first half was 14.2%, the real insurance, naturally, it is even higher - 22.9%. This means that domestic insurers return to policyholders for nearly a quarter of a paid in premiums. And it is clear that this figure will grow in the future.
It is worth paying attention to one very important trend: national company, focusing on the development of classical risk insurance (for the most part these are companies with foreign capital), have low profitability compared with the "shemschikami", and sometimes losses.
In total 36% of payments are payments to financial risks. Financial risks insurance companies use to optimize the taxation and sale of various financial schemes (with financial and property insurance risks of the enterprise have the right to classify its expenditures on gross expenditure, thereby reducing their taxable income) is still the main type of income insurance. Very popular tax schemes used in large industrial and financial-industrial groups, with nearly 90% of all insured risks in Ukraine - the risks of corporate clients. This ensured the rapid growth of the domestic insurance market capacity for a very short time. As a result, there was an increase in the premiums to GDP.
This year the trend has changed. And on a pure premium reduction occurred to a lesser extent - from 2.8 to 2% of gross - to a greater: from 5.6 to 3.8%. However, not only reduced the amount of gross premiums, but their magnitude is double counting. As is known, gross premiums include amounts of internal reinsurance, except that their re-registration, while net premiums not have this drawback. So what is alleged deterioration, according to Viktor Suslov, in fact, evidence of qualitative changes in the insurance market for the better.
Schemes are not purely Ukrainian invention. Experts estimate that 25-40% of the insurance market in the West to some extent associated with the schemes. If you prefer, you can find many examples of cooperation of large European corporations with insurance companies from offshore to minimize the tax base. But in the West, most of these operations are legal and are financial tools to properly manage financial flows. In Ukraine, "unreal insurance" has a much higher volume than in developed countries. Many of the problems, according to the Financial Services Commission, rooted in the specifics of the current system of taxation of insurance business. Income tax rate is 25%, but the insurers pay the tax on gross income - 3%, equivalent to 11-percent tax profits.
We add that it is often difficult to separate the "optimization" of the required operations of reinsurance. Suppose, for a round sum can insure nuclear facilities, space launches, air and sea transport, but it is possible - and the plant from a meteorite. The probability of an insured event in such transactions is low, but only the latter case is seen as a deliberate use of insurance schemes to reduce tax or capital outflow.
The use of optimization schemes due, primarily, high-shadowing of the Ukrainian economy. Unlike the Government Financial Services Commission may only deal with the symptoms of this problem by blocking the channels of the output of capital abroad. One of them - reinsurance from foreign companies. Two years ago, the ratio of the share reinsurance of non-residents and residents in gross premiums amounted to respectively 35 to 25% last year - 10 to 50%, and in the first half of 2005, the share of non-resident reinsurers accounted for only 3% to 49% from reinsurers resident. Positive could be called the lack of reinsurance companies from the Baltic countries, receiving payments from Ukraine - it is through this region carried the lion's share of capital flight. Reinsurance flows from the Ukraine moved to Poland, Russia, Germany, UK, USA, Austria and France.