AIIEA will protect insurers from foreign onslaught

India InsuranceAll India Insurance Employees’ Association (AIIEA) president Amanullah Khan said attempts by the Central government to privatise general insurance companies would be thwarted. It is also against the imposition of income and service taxes on insurance policies.

The AIIEA has represented these and other matters concerning the public sector insurers to Prime Minister and Finance Minister earlier, but to no avail.

If the Central government proceeds to list the four fully-owned subsidiaries of General Insurance Corporation of India (GIC) —National Insurance Company Limited,New India AssuranceCompany Limited,Oriental InsuranceCompany Limited andUnited India Insurance Company Limited— on the stock exchanges, the AIIEA will organise nation-wide protests, warned Mr. Khan.

At a press conference here on Saturday, Mr. Khan said the GIC subsidiaries had assets worth nearly Rs.1.20 lakh crore and had earned a profit of nearly Rs. 2000 crore. Their performance was the best-in-class in spite of stiff competition from private insurers.

Similarly, the Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC) continued to dominate the market with a settlement of 99.86 per cent of maturity claims and 99.38 per cent of death claims.

These were world records in the industry.

It has 70 per cent share in premium income and 76 per cent share in the number of policies. With over 32 crore policy-holders, it is far ahead in the race for new business and in serving the existing customers.

Financial muscle

The rise in Foreign Direct Investment limit in insurance sector from 26 to 49 per cent is not a threat to us. With our matchless track-record and customer loyalty, we are going to ward off any challenge from foreign players, said Mr. Khan.

However, he observed that it (FDI) was not in the interest of the customers.

The AIIEA leader sought to know why the Central government was encouraging private companies when LIC remained its backbone giving the much-needed financial muscle during times of global distress.

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