Allianz is one of the strongest financial communities in the world. We provide employment for over 142,000 people. Some 92 million customers in more than 70 markets rely on our insurance products and funds for their financial wellbeing. In 2018, our income tax contribution around the world was 2.2 billion Euros, thereby enabling public spending in education, housing, medical care, etc.
By the very nature of what we do - protecting people and businesses against risk - we contribute to our customers' long-term financial wellbeing and to stabilizing local economies. Insurance is one of the key ways by which we limit the impacts of climate risks and compensate for climate-related damages. The higher the level of insurance coverage a country has, the more resilient it is to extreme natural events. Furthermore, following an extreme weather event such as a flood or hurricane, insurance payments are often a fast and reliable solution to help victims recover quickly, preventing them from falling into, or deepter into, poverty.
We are focused on supporting low-income customers in Asia, Africa and South America to close the gap for people who need access to low-cost financial services. Digitalization is enabling more and more people to access insurance as we embrace the opportunities through our Digital by Default strategy, implemented with our .
But it's not just through our core business that we contribute to sustainable economic growth; we are also focused on breaking down barriers to social inclusion for a better, more productive future. That is why, in 2016, we made social inclusion one of the three priorities of our .