A lens on Hong Kong – Actuaries Institute Asia Tour 2019

Following meetings in China, the Asia Tour travelled to Hong Kong where senior Institute representatives joined Institute President Nicolette Rubinsztein and CEO Elayne Grace in a range of informative meetings and seminars.

Engaging volunteers, members and supportive stakeholders are key ingredients to the success of the Institute’s Asia Tour each year.

This year, we were delighted to have Ian Laughlin, Actuary of the Year 2018, Steve Hui, Institute Council Member and Andy Yang, Chairman of the Asia Sub-Committee join President of the Actuaries Institute, Nicolette Rubinsztein, CEO Elayne Grace, and myself, in Hong Kong to continue the Asia Tour 2019. Read about the meeting in China here.

The two-day visit to Hong Kong consisted of various meet up sessions, luncheons, a CPD Tour and a special presentation at the Australian Consulate General.

We listened to local updates at these meetings, and then shared updates from the Australian market and the Institute’s work in Data Analytics, as well as its response to the Royal Commission.

President Nicolette also raised the topic on the supply of actuaries and shared her view on striking the gender balance in the actuarial profession by encouraging more girls to take up advanced maths.

The Actuarial Society of Hong Kong (ASHK) had rolled out the first local fellowship exam in May earlier this year and introduced the new Actuarial Innovation committee, chaired by Dicky Lam.

“There was plenty of innovation happening, particularly in the technology space. It was great to see the entrepreneurial spirit in our actuaries,” said Nicolette.

“My other key takeout was around job opportunities – there seem to be lots of opportunities, particularly for general insurance actuaries.”

We met at the Insurance Authority for the second year in a row with Raymond Tam, Executive Director (Policy and Development) and Queenie Hui, Senior Manager, General Business sharing local developments in general insurance business. Ian Laughlin also contributed his regulatory insights at this meeting.

President Nicolette hosted two luncheons for executives and senior members based in Hong Kong.

“The profound discussion about the local markets, innovation and their works gave us the opportunity to acknowledge our members’ outstanding achievement in the local market,” said Nicolette.

“We were all really inspired by the energy of all the young actuaries at these meetings,” said Elayne Grace.

Ian Laughlin agreed:

“The highlight for me was a lunch on the Tuesday.  There were some wonderful young male and female actuaries working in a such a range of different fields. This included a number involved in start-ups and other entrepreneurial work and some in quite senior roles at relatively young ages. It was inspiring to talk to them,” said Ian.

The corporate visit was at Swiss Re, one of the top employers of the actuarial profession in Asia. It was great to learn from the senior executive teams, especially about their views on the Asia market.

CPD Tour Hong Kong – Professionalism in the New World

The Royal Commission into Misconduct in the Banking, Superannuation and Financial Services Industry has drawn lots of attention, both in Australia and abroad. Therefore, the Institute extended the CPD Tour to cover HK this year. The 2.5 hour session was co-hosted by the Institute and ASHK at the Deloitte office on 25 June.

President Nicolette presented on the business environment and shared her reflections on professionalism.

Ian Laughlin’s session The World We Are In shared his personal experience and compared the legislative requirements for actuaries in Australia and Hong Kong.

Thomas Tang and Roddy Anderson participated in this session to represent the ASHK Professional Matter Committee. They have both made a great contribution to local development around the professionalism, including through the Professionalism Seminar, Profession Conduct Codes, Disciplinary Scheme and local actuarial examinations.

Closing remarks

The Institute’s Asia based members and the local actuarial community appreciated the opportunity to learn from the Australian experience and Royal Commission. These presentations were well received and well attended.

The Institute is grateful for Ian Laughlin’s contribution to 2019 Asia Tour. Apart from the above-mentioned events, he presented at the first FORUM Hong Kong session on IFRS (co-hosted with ASHK on 27 June) and at an external Artificial Intelligence conference to represent the Institute.

With the rise of Insurtech in Asia and the growth engine that is China, the Asia markets are quite unique, presenting exciting opportunities that come with many challenges!

The Institute looks forward to working with our Asia-based members to release more materials, such as Podcasts and Dialogues, that are focused on Asia markets, to share with the wider membership in Australia.

“Thank you to everyone I met for your warm hospitality. I absolutely loved the experience,” said Nicolette.

“A particular thank you to Robert Chen, Steve Hui, Andy Yang for being excellent hosts.”

The 2019 Asia Tour was a valuable trip and the takeaways gained will be useful for the upcoming Strategy Day in September.

Your feedback on 2019 Asia Tour is welcome, please contact Kitty Chan if you are interested in participating in the Tour next year.

Read Part 1 of the Asia Tour 2019 report – A lens on China here.

Read the report on the Leadership Forum at the Australian Consulate General in Hong Kong here.

CPD: Actuaries Institute Members can claim two CPD points for every hour of reading articles on Actuaries Digital.