Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Indian Insurers Can Invest In Onshore Rupee Bonds Of IFC, ADB

Insurance behemoth the Life Insurance Corporation (LIC) of India has tied-up with all five insurance repositories in order to comply with the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDA) last week.

The insurance regulator had launched a two-month pilot project for Mumbai last month, making it mandatory for all life insurance firms to digitise traditional paper policies a minimum of 1,000 or 5 % of the total individual policies issued. Further, this facility may be extended across the country.

The sector regulator has recently provided insurance repository licence to five companies i.e. - Central Insurance Repository Limited, NSDL Database Management Limited, Karvy Insurance Repository Limited, CAMS Repository Services Limited and SHCIL Projects Limited.

To avail the facilities, policyholders will only need to open an e-insurance account with any of the five insurance repositories. It's free of cost for the policyholders. However, insurance companies will be required to bear the cost with the repositories.This electronic format will enable policyholders to renew policies online. Also, there will be no risk to lose the physical documents.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Indian Insurers Can Invest In Onshore Rupee Bonds Of IFC, ADB

Accepting the request of International Finance Corporation (IFC), Indian insurance regulator, the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDA), on Wednesday, allowed Indian insurers to invest in onshore rupee bonds issued by IFC and Asian Development Bank (ADB).

The International Finance Corporation , World Bank's financing arm for the private sector, said that it would raise $2.50 billion (about Rs.15,000 crore) from rupee-denominated bonds to support infrastructure development in India.

IFC Executive Vice President and CEO Jin-Yong Cai said, “The IFC will use a combination of rupee-denominated bonds and swaps to raise local-currency financing of up to Rs.15,000 crore over the next five years."

“It will also create a new momentum in the development of corporate bond market and long-term bond market. It will create a yield curve which can then be followed by others", Economic Affairs Secretary Mr. Arvind Mayaram said at the time of launching the scheme.

The central government has allowed onshore rupee bonds issued by multilateral agencies like ADB and IFC to be classified as securities under the Securities Contracts (Regulation) Act.

Following this, the insurance watchdog too classified such bonds as approved investments for the Indian insurance cos.

According to the insurance regulator, the public issue onshore rupee bonds by ADB or IFC should be approved by Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) and be subject to the rating criteria as per its investment regulations.

However, if SEBI exempts rating of the bonds by the credit rating agencies registered with it owing to the rating received from international rating agencies then it will be considered as approved investments, the insurance regulator said.

The valuation of these bonds will be similar to other corporate bonds and debentures, IRDA said.

Jharkhand Govt Moots Insurance Scheme For Farmers

The Congress supported Jharkhand Mukti Morcha government, led by Mr. Hemant Soren plans to bring a free insurance scheme for the farmers of the state.

During his visit to Central Coalfields Limited (CCL), Piparwar, the Jharkhand Agriculture Minister Mr. Yogendra Saosaid, “The government is prepare to tackle the situation of drought in the state while on the other hand it would also implement free insurance scheme for the farmers."

By this insurance scheme farmers would be highly benefitted, he said adding, “The modalities of this free insurance scheme for the farmers, is being worked out."

There would be at least one agricultural bank established in every block, he said.

Mr. Sao also held separate meetings with the CCL officials and the local Congress workers of the area.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Reliance General Profit Up 138% In First Quarter Of FY' 2014-15

The Anil Ambani-led Reliance General Insurance Company has registered its profit more than double to Rs 24.3 cr in the first quarter of fiscal year 2014-15. During the period, the leading private general insurance firm sold more than 10 lac policies.

In the first quarter that ended on June 30, 2014, the insurer's profit rose by 138% to Rs 24.3 crore from Rs 10.2 crore in the same period of previous year.

“While the industry is going through a phase of slow growth, we at Reliance General are trying to reach out to the under-insured population and businesses to sustain growth. We have one of the biggest agency strength which has helped us significantly,“ Reliance General Insurance Company Chief Executive Officer Mr. Rakesh Jain told reporters.

The insurer registered its first full-year net profit at Rs 64 crore for the last fiscal year that ended on March 31, 2014.