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MADISON, Wis. – Dr. Augustine Lim, the new chairman of the National Credit Union Federation of Korea (NACUFOK) visited with CUNA Mutual Group officials to help mark the launch of a partnership that will introduce credit disability and credit life insurance to credit unions and their members in South Korea. The relationship with NACUFOK goes back approximately 30 years, when CUNA Mutual worked with NACUFOK to establish the loan protection and life savings insurance program in South Korea, home to one of the world’s largest credit union movements. Under the new partnership, CUNA Mutual will provide expertise to develop new products and reinsure 50% of the risk, while NACUFOK will sell and administer the products. “CUNA Mutual is looking forward to working jointly with NACUFOK to develop additional new products for credit unions and members in South Korea,” said Lon Sprecher, senior vice president of CUNA Mutual’s International sDivision. South Korea is the third largest credit union movement behind the United States and Canada. The country’s 1,200 credit unions have 5.4 million members with savings of $16.6 billion in U.S. dollars. NACUFOK is a credit union league that manages its own insurance operations and also provides a central liquidity facility. Its insurance operation has $135 million (U.S. dollars) in gross annual premiums and $6.7 billion (U.S. dollars) in total life coverage. The league has 500 employees. During their March 20 visit, Lim and Yoo met with CUNA Mutual’s President/CEO Michael Kitchen as well as officials from CUNA & Affiliates, the World Council of Credit Unions and CUNA Credit Union. Dr. Lim, a lawyer by training, has a long history as a volunteer leader in the Korean credit union movement. Elected chairman of NACUFOK in December 2002, he was accompanied on his trip by Richard Yoo, his assistant and a former manager in NACUFOK’s insurance operation and played a key role in developing the joint credit disability and credit life product. CUNA Mutual Group/International serves the special insurance needs of international financial cooperatives and their members. Currently, major areas of focus are the Caribbean region, Puerto Rico, Australia, Great Britain, Canada, China and South Korea and projects are determined by the needs of each country and may range from operating as a direct writer to functioning as a reinsurer, Kitchen said. -

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