India Post to opt for Rs 15,000-cr investment in debt, equity

Written by Prachi Karnik Pradhan | Mumbai, Mar 27 | Updated: Mar 29 2008, 03:28am hrs
The Department of Post (DoP) proposes to invest its corpus of Rs 15,000 crore accrued through postal life insurance (PLI) and rural postal life insurance (RPLI) in the debt and equity. DoP, which would soon set up a special investment division, has roped in the SBI Mutual Fund and UTI as consultants for this purpose. The department would by mid-April sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with SBI MF and UTI and by end of April, the Investment Division would be functional,

DoP used to deposit over the years its corpus in the Consolidated Fund of India and now opting for ivesting it in capital market, informed Suneeta Trivedi, chief general manager, Postal Life Insurance (PLI) Directorate.

Trivedi told FE on Thursday that there are over 85 lakh PLI policies (with the corpus size of over Rs 12,500 crore) and over 20 lakh RPLI policies. The total sum assured is around Rs 61,000 crore, she added. The decision would provide an impetus to the investments in the PLI and RPLI as policy holders would be able to reap additional capital appreciation from their investments with the postal department, she noted.

Trivedi said, We are looking at expanding our insurance business in a very big way. We will invest funds from our postal insurance schemes on the lines of the guidelines specified under the Insurance Regulatory Development Authority (IRDA). Though the department does not fall under the purview of the IRDA, its guidelines would be followed strictly, she added.

The DoP had earlier appointed global consultant AF Fergusson to look into the investment option for the department, she noted.

Trivedi said that the Investment Division would be controlled by an Investment Board comprising members including financial experts, experts from the finance ministry. The role of the Investment Board is to formulate long term investment policies.