Axa Asia Pacific has announced a joint venture with AHB to buy the Malaysian life insurance business of Tahan.

Axa Asia Pacific will work with Affin Holdings Berhad (AHB), a Malaysian investment holding company, to purchase the business. The total cost will be RM121 million ($32.3 million), with AXA paying RM60.5 million ($16.1 million) for its half share.

AXA says that the venture is an opportunity to enter the Malaysian life insurance market, one of the largest and fastest growing insurance markets in Asia. The purchase is subject to regulatory and shareholder approval, and certain conditions. The companies hope to complete the deal by early 2006.