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Kamal favours local insurers over foreign ones

  • Published at 01:35 am September 12th, 2019
AHM Mustafa Kamal
File photo of Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal Courtesy

Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal said in the process of insurance through foreign firms, a huge amount of premium money went abroad

Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal said yesterday that getting insured through foreign insurance companies would not be allowed any more, as local insurers were now financially strong to cover any losses.

He said in the process of insurance through foreign firms, a huge amount of premium money went abroad.

“This cannot be repeated any longer,” Kamal told reporters at his Agargaon office.

“No premium would go abroad now,” he said.

He said the financial strength of state-owned general insurer, Sadharan Bima Corporation (SBC), and other local companies grew significantly to cover any extent of potential risks.

Kamal also observed that the SBC gained strength significantly in the recent times through premium income from providing insurance coverage against imports of machinery for Padma bridge, Matarbari power plant, Rooppur Nuclear power plant and Bangabandhu satellite projects.

“Premium amount would now go to local companies," Kamal said.

He was speaking at a ceremony held at his Agargaon office when a delegation of SBC handed him a Tk50 crore cheque in profit exchequer for 2018. In the previous year, SBC deposited Tk40 crore in  profit to the government's exchequer.  

He said local premium payments would enhance financial strength of local insurers.

"Once revenue income grows, it (SBC) will enhance its services," he added.

Currently, Bangladesh’s insurance sector comprises 45 general insurance companies. 

In 2017, non-life insurers earned a gross premium income of Tk2,908.1 crore. In 2018, the sector's total premium income grew by 11.70% from 11.11% in the previous year, according to data from the Insurance Development and Regulatory Authority (IDRA).

Among others, National Board of Revenue chairman Mosharraf Hossain Bhuiyan, SBC board chairman Professor Shibli Rubayat-Ul-Islam and Managing Director Syed Shahriyar Ahsan were present, among others, at the cheque handover ceremony.