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Saturday, December 28, 2013

No shortage of life insurance products from January 1: IRDA

There will be no shortage of life insurance products from January 1 when new norms come into effect, according to T. S. Vijayan, Chairman, Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDA).

“Every life insurer has a minimum 10 to 15 products ready to be launched or already launched. We have cleared about 500 products so far,” Vijayan told newspersons on the sidelines of an interactive session organised by the Federation of Andhra Pradesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry here on Friday.

Life insurers have been barred from hawking old products starting next month. They can only sell products that are compliant with the new product design norms brought in by the insurance regulator early this year.

“As all products have gone to the shelves of the insurers (from IRDA after approval), their exact launch would depend on their market strategies,” he added.


Earlier, while addressing participants at the meeting, the IRDA chief said the imposition of service tax or its removal was not in the purview of the insurance regulator.

The premium on life insurance products, especially those by the Life Insurance Corporation, is likely to go up from January 1 as the market leader would collect service tax separately. Several private insurers have already started doing so.


Referring to the permission being given to banks to act as insurance brokers , Vijayan said: “Banks should represent the customers. We want banks to sell the best policies of 24 life insurance companies. We are pushing for it.”

The Finance Ministry had issued a circular last week asking banks to turn into brokers of multiple insurance companies.

As of now, banks are only permitted to act as corporate agents of insurers.


On the state of industry, he said total business in the life and non-life sector should touch Rs 4 lakh crore this year, a 10 per cent growth over last year.

Source: thehindubusinessline


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