Sri Lanka’s ABC Insurance goes rural

April 26, 2008 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s ABC Insurance Company says its premiums rose 300 percent to 129 million rupees in the year to March 2008, following the company’s drive to push insurance to rural areas especially among the fishing community. ABC Insurance Company which was established nearly three years ago saw its premiums from general insurance increased to 230 million rupees in 2007, from 70 million the year before.

The company’s life insurance income also increased to 52 million over 24 million, in the same year.

“After the tsunami, there is a big demand for insurance from the rural areas,” managing director Vinnie Gunaratne said.

The 2004 tsunami killed nearly 31,000 and displaced one million in Sri Lanka. The survivors’ property and livelihoods were destroyed away with the wave and had no way of claiming insurance.

ABC Insurance promoting life and general insurance and venturing into hull insurance, has over 25,000 policies and 40 percent is from the rural areas.

The firm has insured over 1,000 fishing boats including the fisherman and the crew, Silva said.

“We went to Kalmunai, no insurance company comes to that area because of the risk and we went to insure the boats, the people and their houses as the