PSU general insurance employees upbeat about wage hike

Posted by on May 6th, 2010 and filed under Business/Economy. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

Chennai, May 6 (IANS) Employees unions of four government-owned non-life insurance agencies are upbeat about getting a good wage settlement in the wake of a 14 percent premium growth the insurers have logged during fiscal 2009-10.

The next round of wage talks is scheduled to be held May 8 in Mumbai in which the chairman and managing directors (CMD) of National Insurance Company, New India Assurance Company, Oriental Insurance Company and United India Insurance Company will participate.

The CMD of General Insurance Corporation of India (GIC) and officials of Agriculture Insurance Corporation are also expected to take part.

‘During the earlier round of talks, General Insurers Public Sector Association (GIPSA), while offering 17.5 percent wage hike, had indicated that for every one percent growth in premium the companies can offer a 2.5 percent wage hike. At that time the premium growth rate benchmark was 8.5 percent,’ J. Gurumurthy, secretary of the All India Insurance Employees Association (AIIEA), told IANS.

‘For the year ended March 31, 2010, the four government companies have logged 14 percent growth. Going by GIPSA’s benchmark norms the employees are eligible for 42 percent wage hike. Our demand of 40 percent hike is lower than that,’ he added.

According to the data released by the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDA), the four companies have earned a total premium of Rs.20,528 crore last fiscal, up from Rs.18,031 crore earned in 2008-09.

‘Even in April this fiscal, National Insurance has logged 23 percent growth and United India is slated to show 30 percent premium increase,’ Gurumurthy said.

While the business had grown, he said, the number of employees had gone down with no fresh recruitment in the past 20 years.

The total number of employees in the four companies at the end of March 2009 stood at 69,026 as against 70,141 the previous year.

Meanwhile, United India officials indicated to IANS that GIPSA was firm in its offer of 17.5 percent wage increase.

And unlike in the banking sector, the insurance employees will not be offered another chance to join the pension scheme despite the unions making such a demand.

United India has provided for 17.5 percent wage hike while finalising its accounts for the year ended March 31, 2010. The other three companies are expected to follow that norm.

According to Gurumurthy, the talks on Saturday will be the first one in which the heads of four companies would participate.

Categories: Business/Economy

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