Vehicle theft only one aspect

YOUR correspondent Paul Yip (South China Morning Post, August 7) asked about the cost to insurers of motor vehicle theft.

In the first half of 1993 private car theft losses amounted to $211.1 million compared with $227.5 million during the same period of 1992, or a reduction of only seven per cent.

Although the experience in the second quarter alone shows a welcome reduction both in the number and value of vehicles stolen there is still a long way to go.

If the trend continues and we can be sure that the theft situation has returned to a more manageable level then the Accident Insurance Association will take this into account when carrying out the annual review of recommended motor insurance premium rates for 1994.

However, we should not lose sight of the fact that vehicle theft is only one of the components that has to be met from insurance premiums and that a significant part is the cost of accident repairs where both parts and labour are impacted by the high inflation environment of Hong Kong.

It is to be hoped that a continuing improvement in the theft situation will mitigate the increase in premiums that would otherwise be required to meet these escalating costs.

PETER J. DUNN Chairman The Accident Insurance Association of Hong Kong