Indian State-run Reinsurer Mulls Russia Expansion

India’s state-owned reinsurer General Insurance Corporation (GIC) is looking to open a Russian subsidiary as part of a wider global expansion plan, the Hindu BusinessLine reported Monday.

The company said it is also exploring the possibility of an office in Brazil to cater to the South American market.

“Ideally, we would want a 50:50 share in our foreign and domestic underwriting. Today we are at 70:30, and we want to better it. We are also looking at offices abroad to balance our portfolio and give us balance,” said Devesh Srivastava, General Manager, GIC.

The medium-term objective of the management is to achieve 60:40 domestic-international risk portfolios, he added.

GIC is the largest agricultural reinsurer in the world, owing largely to its domestic writings. In the international market, property is the “bread and butter” for GIC, according to Srivastava.

GIC already has branch offices in Dubai and Malaysia, as well as a representative office in Moscow. It is now upgrading the Moscow office to a full-fledged subsidiary, and hopes to start operations in 2-3 months.

“This will service the FSU and CIS countries,” said Srivastava. It is also exploring the possibility of an office in Brazil to service the South American market, but it is still at an early stage.

GIC already has a presence in the Afro-Asian region, and is a leading the reinsurance programs of several insurance companies in SAARC countries, Africa, South-East Asia and West Asia.