Bank of Communications (BoCom) and the Commonwealth Bank of Australia have launched a new joint venture life insurance partnership in Shanghai.

BoCom, a Chinese bank, has been given approval by China regulators to enter the insurance market as part of a pilot program. Previously known as China Life CMG, BoCom has taken over China Life’s 51% share of the joint venture and was renamed BoCommLife Insurance Company.

Simon Blair, group executive international financial services, said: “We intend to help grow the business nationally by tapping into BoCom’s resources and its enormous distribution network.

“Combined with the Commonwealth Bank’s experience in bancassurance, we are confident of a strong and successful future for BoCommLife. Our goal is to create a leading and competitive life insurer that covers the national China market.”

BoCom has implemented shareholding system for its capital and mode of ownership form. It has 2,600 outlets in 143 cities, 350 wealth management centres and 10,000 self-help machines. It is listed on both the Shanghai and Hong Kong stock exchanges.