Standalone health insurers continue to outpace non-life firms in India

Overall contribution now estimated to be around 40%

Standalone health insurers continue to outpace non-life firms in India

Life & Health

By Kenneth Araullo

Recent industry data for November reveals that standalone health insurers in India have played a pivotal role in propelling growth within the non-life insurance sector.

The General Insurance Council's flash figures show that the industry accrued a total premium of Rs 1,88,247 crore in the first eight months up to November 2023. This represents a 13.8% increase compared to Rs 1,65,359 crore in the same period the previous year.

A report from The Times of India revealed that health insurers reported a substantial rise, with a total premium collection of Rs 19,585 crore, marking a 25% increase from Rs 15,625 crore in the first eight months of the fiscal year 2023. Excluding the contributions from health insurance companies, the non-life insurance industry's growth rate would stand at 12.6%.

While detailed segment-wide premium figures are pending, industry insiders suggest that about one-third of general insurers' premium revenue is derived from health insurance, which has seen an approximate 25% growth. Consequently, the overall contribution of health insurance to the sector is now estimated to be around 40%.

In absolute terms, Bajaj Allianz emerged as the top contributor to premium income this year, securing a total premium of Rs 14,115 crore compared to Rs 10,399 crore last year, an increase of 35%.

ICICI Lombard also saw a significant rise in premium income, reaching Rs 16,722 crore, which is an increase of Rs 2,325 crore or 16% over the initial eight months of FY23. Meanwhile, New India Assurance, the public sector entity with the largest premium book, experienced an 8% growth, reaching Rs 24,381 crore.

Other notable performers in the industry include Tata AIG, Oriental Insurance, Star Health & Allied, Go Digit, SBI General, HDFC Ergo, Cholamandalam, Care Health, and Reliance General, each adding over Rs 1,000 crore to their collections compared to last year.

However, public sector insurers have seen a dip in market share, now accounting for 31.5% of the industry's total premium, a decrease from 33% in the previous year.

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