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Bupa Officially Withdraws from the Chinese Market

As early as September, there have been rumors circulating in the market that Bupa is preparing to withdraw from the Chinese market (excluding Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan), and recently, it became official.

As an important player in the medical insurance market, Bupa’s products have long been known for their “high coverage and high premiums”, making them popular among high-net-worth individuals.

Regrettably, due to various considerations, Bupa has decided to officially withdraw from the Chinese market, ending new business and policy renewals, starting from December 1, 2023.

In this Pacific Prime article, we’ll briefly examine some of the possible reasons that have been put forward to account for Bupa’s decision, but our focus is on the options available to Bupa’s existing clients going forward.

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Why Bupa Is Withdrawing from the Chinese Market

No specific reasons for Bupa’s withdrawal were officially given. However, according to analysis and speculation from industry experts, the reason for the withdrawal may be Bupa’s inability to achieve expected profitability–in fact, Bupa may even have incurred losses.

Although Bupa’s premiums are high, the costs of maintaining high-level benefits and services are also greater.

Bupa’s withdrawal can be gleaned from its recent premium increases. From 2022 to 2023, Bupa’s plan premiums increased by an average of around 10%, with some increases even nearing 20%!

With such increases, a decrease in the number of customers is foreseeable, ultimately causing a vicious cycle.

Options for Transferring Insurance from Bupa

Some insurance companies have provided transfer options for existing AIC-Bupa policyholders, usually with conditions:


The transfer rules for Allianz are as follows:

  • Transfer of offers: For members who are insured with AIC-Bupa individual policies and have been medically underwritten, refer to Allianz’s product mapping. Similar and lower coverage are allowed, but upgrades are not allowed.
  • Commencement date: The earliest start date is the day Allianz receives the signed PE letter.
  • Application submission date: From 30 days prior to the start date to five working days prior to the start date with complete enrolment forms (both days inclusive)
  • Maximum age of enrolment: 74 years old
  • Maximum renewal age: 99 years old

There are three specific situations:

  • Full medical underwriting terms: 5% incentive discount for transferring AIC-Bupa members; available for Diamond and Ultracare individual plans.
  • Standard Continuous Personal Medical Exclusion (CPME) terms: For members who are insured with AIC-Bupa for a period of up to five years since last underwritten, standard CPME terms will be applied with 15% loadings to Ultracare plans at standard rates.
  • Advanced CPME terms: For members who are insured with AIC-Bupa for a period of up to six years or more since last underwritten, advanced CPME terms will be applied with 35% loadings to Ultracare plans at standard rates.

However, please note that when transferring insurance, customers aged 65 and above will also need to provide medical examination reports from the past six months in addition to providing identification documents and a passport.

Transfer to Diamond plans is possible only in the first situation above, and an additional health disclosure needs to be filled out. Transfer to Ultracare plans is possible in all three situations.

If there is a history of the following conditions, additional health questionnaires will need to be completed:

  • If you have a history of cardiovascular diseases, including heart or cerebrovascular disease, hypertension, or hyperlipidemia, an additional “Cardiovascular questionnaire” will need to be filled out.
  • If you have a history of diabetes or conditions related to blood sugar level, an additional “Diabetes questionnaire” will need to be filled out.
  • If you have had benign or malignant tumors, an additional “Cancer questionnaire” will need to be filled out.

For past medical conditions, you’ll need to furnish discharge summaries, medical records, examination reports, and other relevant documents. In all situations, the renewal notice from AIC-Bupa for this year will need to be provided as transfer documentation.

For the second and third situations, you’ll further need to submit your initial comprehensive medical underwriting insurance application and all past insurance certificates from AIC-Bupa.AXA


AXA offers two products for AIC-Bupa clients: Global Prestige Individual Medical Insurance and Smartcare Exclusive High-end Individual Medical Insurance. Below is a summary of the transfer rules:

  • Eligibility requirements for AXA individual insurance must be met, including age and occupation. Transfer applicants must be below 65 years old;
  • Transfer requests must be made at least two weeks before the expiration of the original policy;
  • Transfer applicants need to fill out a transfer application form and provide relevant information from the original policy. The transfer plan must follow the corresponding rules;
  • If an applicant has a disease listed in the coverage-denied list or answers “yes” to question one or two in the medical questionnaire of the transfer application, their transfer application will not be allowed. Additional supplementary information may be asked for after the underwriting process is over.
  • The final decision on accepting the transfer will be based on the underwriting assessment. (For more details and an online consultation, click here.)

The transfer process is as follows:

  1. The applicant submits complete information.
  2. AXA conducts an underwriting assessment, taking approximately three working days.
  3. AXA issues an underwriting opinion letter. The applicant signs the letter and makes payment.
  4. Payment must be made to the designated account before the expiration date of the original policy.
  5. After making payment and signing the underwriting opinion letter, the policy and physical insurance card will be issued to the insured in approximately seven working days.

Transfer Surcharge Ratio and Discounts

For customers insured with AIC-Bupa for one to three years (inclusive), the surcharge is approximately 15%. For customers insured for more than three years, the surcharge is approximately 35%.

Regarding the first-year family discount, a 5% family discount will apply to two-person families on standard premiums (not applicable to the transfer surcharge). Three-person or larger families are eligible for a 10% family discount.

For each year without claims during renewal, a 5% no-claims renewal discount is applicable. This discount increases for each consecutive policy year where no claims are made for up to 20%.

Both of the above discounts can be combined.

Companies That Can Also Provide Coverage

In addition to Allianz and AXA, MediLink-Global and JD Allianz can also accept transfers from BUPA customers with corresponding transfer regulations.

Due to space limitations, we will not go into further details here. Many insurance companies that accept transfers only work with a few designated insurance intermediaries. If you would like more information, you can consult with our insurance advisors online.

We Are Here to Help You

For customers who started their insurance journey only recently, transferring can be a complicated and challenging process, especially since everyone’s situation is different. It may be beneficial to consult multiple insurers.

If you need assistance, Pacific Prime is here waiting for your inquiries. Our service team has years of experience comparing multiple insurers and plan options.

Not only can we provide you with thoughtful service, but we can also help you find suitable insurance products based on your needs. Moreover, we can provide you with additional support, such as assistance with application and making claims, so that you can have a smoother insurance experience!

Please get a FREE, zero-obligation quote or click here for an online consultation today. Our insurance advisors will contact you as soon as possible.

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Disclaimer: Pacific Prime solely represents, operates and manages locally regulated insurance products and services in the territory of PR China. Any references to Pacific Prime Global Company or Group, the international services, insurance products or otherwise stated written or verbally, is for introduction purposes about our overseas network only as each entity is fully independent.