Mumbai: Insurance major LIC on Wednesday said it will exceed the target for first premium collection for this fiscal, indicating better times for the industry than the last year which was dismal for insurers.
Life Insurance Corporation (LIC) had witnessed a 6.5 percent drop in new premium collection in the last fiscal.
"We have budgeted 12 percent growth in first premium collection for the fiscal... But we will grow at substantially higher than the budgeted growth rate," LIC Chairman S K Roy told reporters on the sidelines of an IRDA event here.
"Our first premium growth for the year is more than 30 percent as of now against budgeted 12 percent," he said, adding its growth will drive the insurance market in the current fiscal.
Meanwhile, Roy also said 15 products would be available for sale from next year as per new product guidelines issued by the IRDA.
"Whatever, we have filed with the regulator, we have got approval....On life side, we are looking to have at least 15 products on December 31....This is excluding the group side products, which had already been approved and sale for which have already started," Roy said, adding most of the popular products will be available to customers.
He, however, said no ULIP (unit-linked insurance product) will be among those products available in the first phase from January 1, 2014.
On equity investment, Roy said LIC had invested around Rs 33,000 crore till date in the equities market and future investment would depend on the available opportunities.
"In the current fiscal, we have invested around Rs 33,000 crore as of now...We don't have any benchmark. It will depend on the investment opportunities available in the market," he said, adding the initial Rs 40,000-crore mark will not be a limiting factor for equity investments.
The Chairman also noted that market rally can see profit- booking by insurers.
Roy further said it takes the divestment programme as an investment, which will be done on merit.
"We view any disinvestment as any other investment proposal. If it makes good sense to us, we participate in that and I think, our track record stands testimony to that," he said. He also said the company has not set aside any corpus for the divestment programme.