Continental Re’s gross premium rises 14% to N22.4bn

Continental Reinsurance Plc has recorded a 60 per cent increase in profit before tax from N2.92 billion in 2015 to N4.65 billion. Gross premium income also increased by 14 per cent to N22.41 billion from N19.74 billion reported in 2015.

A statement by the reinsurer said underwriting performance was muted due to a challenging macro-economic and market environment across the continent and adverse claims experience resultant from significant outlays on a couple of large property claims in Nigeria.

It, however, noted that the group’s net investment and other income improved substantially from N1.85 billion in 2015 to N4.87 billion in 2016, representing a 162 per cent increase, underpinned by a strong investment result bolstered by gains on hard currency assets.

The company’s underwriting profit for 2016, however, dipped N414 million from N 2.05 billion in 2015. Commenting on the results, Group Managing Director/ CEO, Continental Re, Dr. Femi Oyetunji, said: “Despite varied developments and widely contrasting fortunes in individual business lines in our underwriting portfolio, our geographic diversity and varied asset mix cushioned us. We continued to see sturdy growth and profitability in some regions and overall maintained strong group performance.

“The global commodity price meltdown and its impact on the hydrocarbon sector and the devaluation of the Nigerian naira remain disconcerting factors for the business. However, market analysts believe that current local intervention strategies and the upturn in the global economy justify general optimism regarding a sustained turnaround and a recovery and repositioning of the Nigerian economy for greater productivity and growth.

“It was the realization of the likelihood of shocks in our principal market, and vulnerability to portfolio concentration, that made us commit to diversification as a core element of our strategy.

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