Commissioner Regalado: Enabling quality service to the insurance market

Commissioner Regalado: Enabling quality service to the insurance market

Prior to his appointment as the new commissioner of the Insurance Commission (IC), Atty. Reynaldo A. Regalado was expected to inherit and regulate an insurance, pre-need, and health maintenance industry that has been calloused by uncertainties brought about by the pandemic and subsequent ballooning of inflation rates.

Before taking over for Former Insurance Commissioner Dennis B. Funa in April last year, Mr. Regalado accrued administrative and diplomatic experience in the country and abroad leading to his appointment. He served as the administrator of the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration from 1998 to 2001. Mr. Regalado was also a Philippine Labor Attache in Japan (1993-2004) and South Korea (2005-2006). The commissioner served as an assistant secretary of the Department of Labor and Employment as well.

Ever since Mr. Regalado was appointed as the country’s Insurance chief, the IC has not only met expectations but also provided Filipinos with quality regulatory services.

In the commissioner’s first year of service in 2023, the IC collected P518 million in registration and supervision fees, a 3.83% increase from the P499.54 million in fees generated in 2022, according to data from the agency.

Broken down, while the collection of processing (-7.19%) and certificate of authority fees (3.39%) decreased, increases were tallied in registration fees for product approval (10.04%), accreditation fees (22.53%), certification fees (2.01%), examination fees (14.12%), filing fees (0.81%), supervision fees (3.02%), other fees (8.77%), and miscellaneous income (26.59%).

Turnover from Former Insurance Commissioner Dennis B. Funa (right) to present Commissioner Reynaldo A. Regalado (left) last March 2023 —

Another accomplishment during the commissioner’s tenure so far is the number of complaints resolved throughout 2023 based on data from the IC. 5,417 complaints from the insuring public were resolved last year compared to 5,025 the year prior.

This is pursuant to the commission’s mandate to regulate and supervise the insurance, pre-need, and HMO industries in accordance with the provisions of the existing Insurance Code as well as Pre-Need Code of the Philippines.

IC data also show that total premiums collected under microinsurance policies as of the third quarter of 2023 increased by 19.6% compared to the same period in 2022. The commission gathered P10.16 million in premiums compared to P8.49 million as of Q3 the year prior.

More recently, a memorandum of agreement between the IC and the Department of Migrant Workers that will provide overseas Filipino workers with a dedicated hotline for the resolution of their complaints against IC-regulated entities was signed this Jan. 24.

An agreement to conduct the country’s first industry-wide morbidity study based on the claims experience of health maintenance organizations (HMOs) and insurance companies was also signed between the IC and the Actuarial Society of the Philippines (ASP). The study aims to evaluate the reasonableness of premium rates, reserve valuations, and capitalization requirements of HMOs and insurance companies.

Due to these achievements, Department of Finance Secretary Ralph G. Recto heaved praise on the commission for evident sustained growth in the industry’s assets, earned premiums, and investments.

“All these numbers underscore the formidable strength of the insurance industry. In addition, this outstanding performance is a testament to the efficiency of the regulatory and supervisory measures implemented by the Insurance Commission,” Mr. Recto was quoted as saying in a message delivered by Officer-in-Charge National Treasurer Sharon P. Almanza during the IC’s 75th Milestone Anniversary Celebration last month. — Jomarc Angelo M. Corpuz