The New India Assurance Company, a government-controlled
general insurer, has reported a 78.1 per cent rise in
net profit for financial year 2005-06. New India's net
profit soared to Rs402.23 crore, while total assets have
ballooned by 36.3 per cent to Rs27,025.58 crore.
to B Chakrabarti, chairman and managing director, New
India Assurance, the company - facing growing competition
from private general insurers - plans to expand its operations
in the Gulf region.
India, like other general insurers, will be facing new
challenges over the coming months, in the detariffication
era. "We are formulating various strategies to take
into account the new scenario," said Chakrabarti.
Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority(IRDA) is
overseeing the changeover to a 'detariffied' regime, where
general insurance companies would be able to decide on
the premiums, depending on several factors. Premiums will
vary across different customer segments.
India, according to Chakrabarti, is already in talks with
transporters associations to sort out problems in the
auto insurance segment in the 'detariffied' era. The company
has earned Rs2,200 crore by way of auto insurance premium,
but had an average claims ratio of 181 per cent.
exposure to the motor insurance business has,however,
resulted in sharp fall in underwriting profit, which has
tumbled from Rs232.78 crore in 2004-05, to Rs36.03 crore
in the following fiscal.
India Assurance earned health insurance premium of Rs700
crore, and the average claims ratio was 110 per cent.
Health insurance is growing at 35 per cent (compounded
annual growth rate), and New India Assurance plans to
launch new products, catering to the mid- and low-income
segments, and also for rural markets.
the year, New India issued bonus shares and the paid-up
capital has gone up from Rs150 crore to Rs200 crore. It
has proposed a dividend of 65 per cent (amounting to Rs130
Domestic gross premium income rose by nearly 14 per cent
to Rs4,791.50 crore, but premium from international operations
declined marginally to Rs884.05 crore. The overall claims
ratio has gone up to 83.63 per cent from 74.85 per cent.
India's investment income was up at Rs2,011 crore from
Rs1,450 crore in the previous fiscal. Profit on sale of
shares accounted for Rs1,140 crore of investment income.