National Insurance expects Rs2 bn from debt and equity investments in 2007-08

National Insurance expects Rs2 bn from debt and equity investments in 2007-08

Reuters

Kolkata: State-owned National Insurance Co Ltd. expects to earn Rs12 bn from its investments in debt and equity markets during 2007-08, up from Rs10.5 bn 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," V Ramaswamy, CMD told reporters.

The firm has an investment portfolio of Rs56 bn, 45% invested in state bonds and the balance in equity and other related instruments.

National Insurance is targeting a gross premium income of Rs46 bn in 2007-08, compared to Rs38.27 bn last year, he said.

The net profit is expected to be R5 bn against Rs4.18 bn 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%. The government wants to further increase the cap to 49%.

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