Indian insurance to be $280 bn industry by 2019-20: Assocham

New Delhi: The Indian insurance industry is expected to grow to $280 billion by 2019-20, aided by the Centre’s Ayushman Bharat health insurance scheme, industry chamber Assocham said on Sunday, citing a joint study conducted with research firm APAS.

In a statement here, Assocham said the study indicated insurance penetration in the country to have reached 3.7 per cent in 2017, from 2.71 per cent in 2001, and that gross premium had increased from Rs 3.2 lakh crore ($49 billion) in 2011-12 to reach Rs 5 lakh crore ($72 billion) in 2017-18.

“The Indian insurance industry is expected to grow to $280 billion by FY2020 with the government’s flagship Ayushman Bharat and other growth drivers like rising disposable incomes, presence of global players and easing of the regulatory regime, helping penetration of the insurance culture in the country,” the study said.

“The push by the government and the regulator has helped increase the penetration of insurance, as spread of schemes have also increased. Several factors such as growing middle class, young population and increasing awareness towards the need for protection and retirement planning will enable further growth,” it said.

The government’s ambitious Ayushman Bharat scheme covering 100 million poor and vulnerable families with a cover of Rs 5 lakh per family of tertiary care and hospitalisation will be transformative for the insurance industry as it would have a major multiplier effect on a host of allied sectors and create lakhs of new jobs, it added.

According to the industry body, private sector companies, which presently hold close to 48 per cent market share in the country’s general insurance business and 29 per cent in life insurance, will see a big growth in opportunities.

The study showed that the domestic life insurance industry registered 11 per cent year-on-year growth for new business premium in 2017-18, generating a revenue of $30 billion. The premiums for non-life insurance industry increased by 17.5 per cent year-on-year in the last fiscal.

“Effective implementation of the Ayushman Bharat scheme will help the entire healthcare and allied sectors like pharmaceutical, diagnostics, medical devices, data management, insurance hospitality, quality accreditation and human resource management with the help of information and communication technologies across the value chain,” the statement added.