Sunday, August 19, 2007

National Insurance sees Rs 1,200 cr from investment


Kolkata: National Insurance Co Ltd expects to earn Rs 1,200 crore from its investments in debt and equity markets during 2007/08, up from Rs 1050 crore earned a year ago, a top official said.

"We have a well managed portfolio and with the growth of the equity markets, it is expected to give handsome returns in the current fiscal," Chairman and Managing Director, V. Ramaswamy, told reporters on Friday.

The firm has an investment portfolio of Rs 5,600 crore, 45 per cent invested in state bonds and the balance in equity and other related instruments.

National Insurance is targettting a gross premium income of Rs 4600 crore in 2007/08, compared with Rs 3827 crore last year, he said.

The net profit is expected to be Rs 500 crore against Rs 418 crore a year ago, he added.

"The growth in investment income, focus on retail and health insurance would fuel the growth in profitability and premium income," Ramaswamy said.

State-run firms such as New India Assurance, Oriental Insurance and National Insurance dominate India's general insurance sector, although there are private firms such as ICICI Lombard, Bajaj Allianz and Tata-AIG.

Foreign holding in Indian insurance companies is limited to 26 per cent. The government wants to increase the cap to 49 per cent, but such a move is opposed by its communist allies.

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