General insurance companies posted a growth of 12.9% (year-on-year) in gross direct premium in July. Data from the General Insurance Council show that private players continued to see higher growth compared to their public sector peers. Specialised insurers such as ECGC and AIC saw negative growth in July.
The general insurance industry witnessed gross premium income of R8,986.56 crore during the month under review, against R7,958 crore in July last year. While private insurers registered gross premium income at R3,948.72 crore last month, up by 22.8% compared with the year-ago period, public sector insurers saw 8.9% growth at R4,502.85 crore.
The general insurance sector in the last few months saw sustained growth and higher participation from private players. “There has been pick-up in insurance demand from the marine and engineering sectors and many private players have started gaining their market share in that segment. Private insurers are already leading with high market share in motor and fire insurance. But some of the big corporates continue to be clients of public sector insurance companies,” said an insurance player.
In the motor insurance segment, gross direct premium income underwritten by non-life insurers till July stood at Rs 15,407.64 crore, with private sector firms contributing Rs 8,234.37 crore and the public sector companies the remaining.
Standalone health insurance companies also saw surge in their premium income by 32.7% in July. However, two specialized players – ECGC and AIC – saw negative growth of 52.6% in July.
“Healthcare segment has seen picking up due to the growing awareness and importance of healthcare. We hope this segment will continue to see strong growth,” said a senior official from a leading health insurance company.