Manulife expands into Cambodia’s life insurance market

TORONTO/CAMBODIA/HONG KONG, Nov. 15, 2011 – Manulife Financial today announces that it has received “approval in principle” from Cambodia’s Ministry of Economy and Finance to set up a wholly foreign-owned life insurance operation. Cambodia expands Manulife Asia’s operations to an 11th territory.

David Wong, Senior Vice President, ASEAN Operations, said: “We are grateful for the Cambodian Government’s support. This expansion demonstrates our commitment to Asia and our success as a forward-thinking leading insurance company that offers strong and reliable risk protection products and services to our customers.

“I am very excited to see Manulife expanding its footprint into Cambodia. Manulife’s last new entry was Vietnam, in 1999. We hope that in Cambodia we can match the achievements of Manulife in other ASEAN markets and help develop Cambodia’s life insurance industry to better serve the emerging life insurance needs of its population.”

In entering the market, Manulife has agreed to support the Cambodian government’s efforts to develop the insurance profession and build confidence in the industry, including through improved consumer education. The company is currently working closely with the government to expedite the final stages of the license approval. In the meantime, it is now actively in the process of establishing its operation in Cambodia, with its head office to be located in Phnom Penh.

With a population of 14.4 million, Cambodia is a World Trade Organization member experiencing rapid economic growth and significant foreign investment. Most importantly, Cambodia’s commitment to aligning its growth with the wider development of the Greater Mekong region has unlocked great potential and given confidence to investors.

About Manulife Financial

Manulife Financial is a leading Canada-based financial services group operating in 21 countries and territories worldwide. For more than 120 years, clients have looked to Manulife for strong, reliable, trustworthy and forward-thinking solutions for their most significant financial decisions. Our international network of employees, agents and distribution partners offers financial protection and wealth management products and services to millions of clients. We provide asset management services to institutional customers worldwide as well as reinsurance solutions, specializing in property and casualty retrocession. Funds under management by Manulife Financial and its subsidiaries were C$492billion (US$473 billion) as at September 30, 2011. The Company operates as Manulife Financial in Canada and Asia and primarily as John Hancock in the United States. Manulife Financial Corporation trades as ‘MFC’ on the TSX, NYSE and PSE, and under ‘945’ on the SEHK. Manulife Financial can be found on the Internet at