New India to launch cheapest health insurance policy

Thursday, February 25, 2010
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Kolkota: Surprising all the other insurance companies, New India Insurance (NIA) is all set to launch one of the cheapest health insurance policies, with the yearly insurance premium for a minimum Rs.1 lakh sum assured for less than Rs.1,000. M Ramadoss, Chairman and Managing Director, New India Assurance said, "By restricting the choice of the insured, we will see how the premium could be brought down. We can also look at sum insured at more than Rs 1 lakh. We hope to file the application with the regulator in the next one month." Currently for a person of up to 35 years, the minimum premium rates for up to Rs.1 lakh sum assured is Rs.1,000 or more. Also, with SBI general insurance slated to enter the market this year, the competition in the industry is likely to intensify. Talking about the entry of SBI, Ramadoss said, "The entry of SBI in the general insurance industry can make a dent in the market." In year 2008-09, the overall growth of the health insurance portfolio has come down to about 5-6 percent against about 30 percent in the previous year. In the current financial year, the company is expecting a growth rate of about 16 percent in terms of gross premium, at Rs.7,250 crore (with Rs 6,000 crore from India, and the rest from foreign branches).
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