India Forging Ahead in Insurance

Article published on 4th July 2008

India Forging Ahead in Insurance

It seems that India's steady economic growth has reached into the life insurance industry as the country's share of the world-wide life insurance sector continues to rise (from i.68% of the international business market in 2006 to 1.97% in 2007).

The totality of life insurance premiums generated in India in 2007 amounted to the equivalent of about £23.5 billion in 2007, up from about £16.5 billion in 2006, and although sales of new policies slowed down between 2007 and 2008, overall the Indian life business grew by over 36% in terms of US Dollar comparison. This growth was due both the continuing strength of the Indian Rupee against the US Dollar and of course because of the absolute growth in renewal premiums.

Swiss Re have released a report recently that shows that the world life insurance market has grown by 12.6% which, after adjusting for inflation, translates into a real growth of 5.4%. By this measure, India's real growth of 14.2% between 2007 and 2008 has been at more than two-and-half times the international average. Not bad at all. Across all of Asia, income from insurance premiums reached £423.77 billion, representing a real-term increase of 4.5%.

Although I think the time when we shall all be calling Indian call centres to arrange life insurance cover from Indian insurance companies is still a long way off, it is heartening (from a non partisan stance) to see the growth of insurance in India and across Asia more generally. It means that there is more disposable income being generated within the region, which in absolute terms can only be a good thing.

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