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TNI News Service (TNS)
Webdesk, TNI Siliguri, 29th January, 2019: Merchants’ Chamber of Commerce & Industry organized a Special Interactive Session with Smt. Tajinder Mukherjee, Chairman & Managing Director, National Insurance Co. Ltd. on “Way Forward for Insurance Industry in India” today at its premises in Kolkata yesterday. Referring to the huge potential of the Insurance sector in India, she said that in spite of the huge growth of the Indian insurance industry, which is expected to reach Rs. 1,80,000 cr. by the end of this financial year, the sector is still at a dismal 2% of the world figure. In India, Life Insurance accounts for 75% of total insurance and non-life for the rest, while the world figure for life: non-life is 55:45. In India, Insurance Penetration is around 3.3%, whereas the world figures are around 6.28%. Insurance industry is over saturated in the developed countries. Half of Indian population is middle class having a disposable income of 2 to 10 USD per capita per day, which shows that there huge untapped resources, she observed. She mentioned that more & more people are being covered by the successive plans like Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana, Pradhan Mantri Fasal Suraksha Yojana, Ayushman Bharat and others. She spoke about the 3 major verticals viz. Health, Automobiles, & Crop Insurance. Automobile is the bread and butter of Non-life sector, she noted. Stressing on the importance of preventive & long term health care requirements, she mentioned that the health insurance sector is like a “Chicken & Egg story”, in which health insurance and quality healthcare treatment & other facilities are inter linked. She also spoke about the gap between the required and the current health care infrastructure. She said that Health Insurance is now at 1.4% of GDP (Gross Domestic Premium), which is about to increase to 2.5% in the short run and expected to reach 5% in the long run. He referred to the other key drivers like mining, infra, power, Public Private Partnership in Defense and others. Cyber Crime Insurance and the related leakage of personal credit card information is another game changer, she added. She also referred to Climate Change providing the biggest challenge to the insurance & reinsurance market. She said that when a catastrophe happens, assets are vulnerable to rich/poor alike. She also mentioned about RERA Act, in which coverage is there for land ownership issues and latent construction defects by the developer. She felt that technology, including Big Data, Social Media, and Digital Technology has a huge role to play in the sector. There is a lot of scope for R & D, insurers can bring in products which will reduce costs & increase customer satisfaction, she pointed out. The CMD of NIC said that NIC would enlarge the product case and coming with 2 new products i.e. Critical Illness Cover & Top-up Cover; super Top-up will be cumulative. Earlier, in his Welcome Address, Shri Vishal Jhajharia, President of the Chamber said that Indian Insurance industry is expected to grow to $280 billion by 2019–20. Gross premiums written in India reached $ 94.48 billion in FY 18 with $ 71.1 billion and $ 23.38 billion from life and non-life respectively.
Photo: MCCI, Kolkata