Aegon-CNOOC receives license for life insurance activities in Shandong province

Aegon-CNOOC Life Insurance Company Ltd., the 50/50 joint venture of Aegon N.V. and the Chinese National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC), has received a license from the regulatory authorities to begin life insurance activities in China's Shandong province.

Aegon-CNOOC will be an early foreign entrant in the province when it opens its first office in Jinan, the provincial capital of Shandong, in the coming months. 

This license follows the 2005 launch of Aegon-CNOOC's Wuxi and Nanjing branch offices, both in the Jiangsu province. This expansion is in line with Aegon-CNOOC's strategy of steady growth in the highly-populated, wealthy and fast-developing coastal provinces, while at the same time consolidating its presence in the metropolitan markets of Shanghai, where it is headquartered, and of Beijing. The regions where Aegon-CNOOC is now active represent a population of over 150 million. It is the company's ambition to achieve a market leadership position in each of the regional markets it enters. 

Aegon-CNOOC sells a comprehensive range of life, accident and supplemental health products through a broad range of distribution channels, including the country's major banks, tied agents, brokers and direct marketing. At the end of the third quarter of 2005, after just over two years of operations, Aegon-CNOOC was ranked number eight in new business premiums among the 22 foreign-invested life insurance companies operating in China. 

Chairman of the Executive Board of Aegon N.V., Donald J. Shepard remarked: "We are pleased with the development of our joint venture in China. In 2005, we were able to gain access to promising new markets and to develop a solid platform for further expansion in 2006. Aegon-CNOOC's early performance is exceeding our expectations and we look forward to achieving a leading market position in China by implementing our successful multi-channel distribution strategy."