The principal branches of insurance are fire, marine, and vehicular, with some growth in aviation and aircraft. Other branches, including life, are still undeveloped. Work-related injuries and imports are required to be insured. In the mid-1980s, there were some 30 insurance companies in Ecuador.
Insurance is closely governed by legal provisions determining necessary reserves and security funds and requiring a percentage of investments in government securities. The Superintendency of Banks periodically examines insurance operations and authorizes the formation of new companies. In accordance with the General Insurance Law of 1965, all insurance companies must apply to the Bank Superintendency for authority to operate.
It has been proposed to privatize the management of pension funds in the state security system, the Instituto Equatoriano de Seguridad Social (IESS). This will be made possible by separating the IESS into three sectors: health, pensions, and rural social security.