About IRDAI


The insurance industry in India is regulated by Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI), headquartered at Hyderabad. IRDAI was formed by an Act of Parliament in 1999. The IRDA Act, 1999 paved the way for the formation of IRDAI. The history goes back to the recommendations of Malhotra Committee where the need for a regulator for insurance sector was suggested. Being the regulator IRDAI carries various functions like:

  • Protecting policyholder’s interest.
  • Granting of license to insurers, brokers etc.
  • Renew, modify, suspend, and cancel the registration.
  • Promoting efficiency in the conduct of insurance business.
  • Regulating investment funds by insurance companies.
  • Regulating maintenance of margins of solvency etc.

Apart from Hyderabad where it is headquartered, the Authority also has office in New Delhi and Mumbai. The composition of Authority as defined in Section 4 of IRDA Act, 1999 consists of 10 members which comprise of the following:

  • A Chairman
  • Five whole time members
  • 4 part-time members.

All the members are appointed by Government of India.

IRDAI is the regulating all forms of insurance except pension funds and postal insurance. Pension fund is regulated by Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA). Postal insurance include Postal Life Insurance (PLI) and Rural Postal Life Insurance (RPLI).

One of the reform measures initiated by IRDAI for general insurance industry came in 2007 when general insurers were allowed to price the premium accordingly. Prior to that, premium pricing was decided by Tariff Advisory Committee (TAC). Hence this is also known detariffing where general insurers are now allowed to decide the price of the premium. General insurers are allowed to decide the premium price to all forms of insurance except motor third party liability where the premium price is decided by IRDAI.

IRDAI is also the promoter of the following organizations:

  • Institute of Insurance and Risk Management (IIRM), Hyderabad: IIRM Hyderabad was established jointly by IRDAI and Government of Telangana in 2002. The institute provides quality education in insurance, risk management, Financial services, Acturial Science etc. The institute provides 1 year International Post Graduate Diploma (IPGD) and two year full time masters i.e Post Graduate Diploma in Management (PGDM). It is one of the rare institutes in the country providing MBA in insurance and related fields. The insurance course is accredited by Chartered Insurance Institute (CII), London and Insurance Institute of India (III), Mumbai. This is a good platform for those who wish to build their carrier in insurance.
  • Insurance Information Bureau of India (IIB): IIB was promoted by IRDAI in 2009 with the participation of stakeholders from insurance sector, with the objective of supporting the insurance industry with sector-level data to enable data based and scientific decision making including pricing and framing of business strategies.

This was a brief introduction about IRDAI and I hope it will be informative. I will be coming up with various other topics related to insurance from time to time. Stay tuned.

– Ashish Kumar

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Trying to paint the paper…


Living in the piece of a paper.
I am trying to paint the paper.
Left in the curse of time.
I am trying to build a new time.
Shattered with the sudden storm.
I was left in a beach of thorn.
The pain was unbearable and immense.
Like someone put an iron rod in the chest.
Tears came and heart wrenched.
Wondered how I got the bloody drench.

Shame acts and broken trust continued.
I stood and fought till I can continue.
During the midst of day and night.
Life gave me tremendous fight.
Sacrificed everything which I had.
Only thing left was the time which was bad.
I lost the battle with a brutal end.
Tried a lot to avoid that end.

Loved the fact that I still survived.
Even though I had no reason to survive.
I left the world which was never mine.
Building a new world which will be mine.
Life is such of twisted events.
Tackling them is prominent.
It takes time to forget and forgive.
Hence life must be lived.
Some time is required to move on.
As…
Living in the piece of a paper.
I am trying to paint the paper.

– Ashish Kumar

A typical shayari…


Recently, I watched a bollywood movie, the name I totally forgot. There was a scene where a boy conveys a girl in poetic mood.

Boy: Kismat se mujhe tum mili ho miss. (You met me of fortune, Miss.)

         Mutual funds are exposed to market risk.

Seriously, I can’t stop my laughter for a while. 🙂 Then I used my little thinking ability to extend what girl would have replied. The girl  version is my extension which I hope you will enjoy reading. Here it is.

Boy: Kismat se mujhe tum mili ho miss. (You met me of fortune, Miss.)

          Mutual funds are exposed to market risk.

Girl: Main tumhari girlfriend nahin banungi Mr. (I won’t become your girlfriend Mr.)

           If you desire, I can be your sister.

Enjoy and keep laughing my friends. 🙂 Please share your experiences if you have encountered such.  😛

– Ashish Kumar

कुछ करते हैं …


कुछ करते हैं |
ख्वाबों को हटा के |
ग़मों को भुला के |
नयी राह बना के |
ज़िन्दगी में आगे बढ़ते हैं |
चलो कुछ करते हैं |

कुछ करते हैं |
दुःख के पलों को चोर के |
अनचाही यादों को जला के |
किस्मत के मार को हरा के |
नयी रौशनी तलाशते हैं |
चलो कुछ करते हैं |

कुछ करते हैं |
दिल की आवाज़ सुन के |
दूसरों के दुखों को मिटा के |
अपने आप से बात कर के |
ज़िन्दगी का मज़ा लेते हैं |
चलो कुछ करते हैं |

कुछ करते हैं |
बिगड़ी किस्मत को बदल के |
ऐसी राह पकड़ते हैं |
तूफ़ान भी घबरा जाये |
ऐसा कुछ सोचते हैं |
मौसम के हर मिजाज को |
मुश्किलों को हरा के |
खुद पे भरोसा रख के |
विश्वास का दामन थाम के |
ज़िन्दगी से लरते हैं |
चलो कुछ करते हैं |
चलो कुछ करते हैं |

– Ashish Kumar

Insurance industry in India


 

Insurance is a part of financial services apart from banking, capital market, money market etc. Insurance is considered as a protection from events which results into financial loss. The insurance industry in India comprises of life insurance, general insurance, stand alone health insurance and reinsurance. The Indian insurance industry is guided by Insurance Act, 1938 which was amended from time to time, the latest amendment happened in 2015.

This post briefly gives an overview of insurance sector in India particularly discussing about the regulator, life insurance, general insurance, stand alone health insurance and reinsurance. The life insurance comprises of around 79% of the market, the rest 21% is occupied by general insurance. Of the general insurance, motor insurance has the highest market share of 44% followed by health insurance having market share of 29%, as per IRDAI Annual Report 2015-16. It is worth to mention that the insurance industry in India has showed a significant growth after it got opened for private sector in the year 2000. Since then, the industry is growing rapidly. In 2015, the reinsurance sector was allowed for foreign players which were solely dominated by General Insurance Corporation of India (GIC Re).  A small discussion about regulator, life insurance, stand alone health insurance and reinsurance is mentioned below.

Regulator:  Indian insurance industry is regulated by Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) which was formed by an Act of Parliament in 1999. The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDA) Act was passed in 1999 leading to the formation of IRDAI. IRDAI is headquartered in Hyderabad and has offices in New Delhi and Mumbai. The regulator is responsible for carrying various activities like granting license to insurance companies, framing regulations which the insurers need to follow, protecting policyholder’s interest etc. Breach of IRDAI regulations can have serious implications resulting from penalty to cancellation of license of the insurance company.

Life Insurance: At present, there are 24 life insurers in India, of which, Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC) is wholly owned by the Government of India. LIC was formed in September 1956 by an Act of Parliament known as LIC Act, 1956.  Some of the private life insurers include ICICI Prudential Life Insurance, HDFC Standard Life Insurance, SBI Life Insurance etc.

General Insurance: Non-life or general insurance comprises of all kinds of insurance except life. It has various segments comprising of motor insurance, health insurance, fire insurance, marine insurance, engineering insurance, aviation insurance, satellite insurance etc. There are 33 non-life insurers operating in India consisting of public and private insurers. The public insurers include the following:

  • The New India Assurance Co Ltd. (NIACL), headquartered at Mumbai.
  • National Insurance Co Ltd. (NICL), headquartered at Kolkata.
  • Oriental Insurance Co Ltd (OIICL), headquartered at New Delhi.
  • United India Insurance Co Ltd (UIICL), headquartered at Chennai.
  • Export Credit Guarantee Corporation of India (ECGC)
  • Agriculture Insurance Company of India (AIC)

ECGC and AIC are known as specialized insurers. Apart from above mentioned public sector companies, some of the private non-life insurers include ICICI Lombard, HDFC Ergo General Insurance, SBI General Insurance, IFFCO Tokio General Insurance, Tata AIG General Insurance etc.

Standalone Health Insurance: These are those companies which are solely carrying their business on health insurance. There are six stand alone health insurers like Apollo Munich Health Insurance, Star and Allied Health Insurance, Max Bupa Health Insurance, Cigna TTK Health Insurance, Religare Health Insurance and Aditya Birla Health Insurance. One of the ways to recognize the stand alone health insurers is that the stand alone health insurers will have the word “health insurance” in the name of the company as in the above mentioned six stand alone health insurers.

Reinsurance: General Insurance Corporation of India (GIC Re) is owned by the Government of India and is the national reinsurer which is headquartered at Mumbai. The reinsurance industry in India is now opened for foreign players to open their branch offices in after the Insurance Act, 1938 was amended in 2015. At present there are 9 foreign reinsurers who have opened their branch offices in India. They are mentioned below:

  • Swiss Re
  • Munich Re
  • Llyod’s India
  • Reinsurance Group f America (RGA)
  • Hannover Re
  • SCOR
  • XL Insurance Company
  • Axa France Vie
  • General Reinsurance AG

It is important to note that apart from GIC Re and the above mentioned foreign reinsurers, ITI Re is the first private Indian reinsurance company which got licensed by IRDAI. Hence the Indian reinsurers include GIC Re and ITI Re.

 

Apart from the above players, the insurance industry also comprises of various intermediaries and distribution channels like agents, brokers, Insurance Marketing Firms (IMF), Web Aggregators etc. which I will discuss in separate post.

One thing to be noted is that the insurers in India can take part in either life insurance or general insurance business and not both. This means that a life insurer cannot start their business of motor insurance, fire insurance etc and vice versa. Health insurance is the only insurance product which can be offered by both non-life and life insurers. Non-life insurers can sell separate health insurance policy while life insurers offer health insurance in the form of riders. Riders are the extra benefits which are covered by paying some extra premium. Example of riders include Accidental Death Benefit (ADB) rider, critical illness rider etc. Life  insurers cannot offer separate health insurance products.

– Ashish Kumar