Despite sluggish economic growth and fluctuating commodity prices, Qatar Insurance Group recorded strong operational performance, coupled with a robust premium growth, taking Gross Written Premium (GWP) to QAR 9.90 billion, up by 19% vis-à-vis the same period in 2015. The underwriting results for the Group for the year amounted to QAR 844 million. The Group’s performance lies in its robust underwriting prowess, global business diversification and strong risk-adjusted capitalization.
The Annual General Meeting that was held yesterday at the Four Seasons Hotel was chaired by Abdulla bin Khalifa Al-Attiya, Deputy Chairman of the Board of Directors. The shareholders discussed the Group’s annual performance and approved increase in the Company’s capital from QAR 2.41 billion to QAR 2.77 billion, endorsed the recommended distribution of cash dividend payout of 15% for the year ending 31st December, 2016 and an issue of bonus shares in the amount of 3 shares for every 20 held. Approval was also granted for QIC’s consolidated financial statements, Independent Auditor’s Report, Board of Directors and Corporate Governance reports for 2016. Further, the appointment of the auditors for 2017 was also finalized during the AGM.
The Group’s consistent approach of applying global standards and best practices in its assessment of the current and future solvency and capital adequacy requirements ensured that it remained well positioned and capitalized amidst the pressure of global market conditions.
Key contributors to the reported growth were the Group’s dedicated global reinsurance and specialty insurance subsidiaries as well as the life and medical segments of the business emanating from the Middle East. The international subsidiaries in Bermuda, London and Malta grew at a rate of 18% and now account for approximately 70% of the Group’s total GWP.
QIC Group’s consolidated net profit for the full year 2016 came in at QAR 1,034 million. This result reflects regional economic and investment headwinds due to lower oil prices and continued softening of global reinsurance and specialty insurance markets. On the back of prevailing global market volatility, the Group’s net investment income came in at QAR 925 million. This result can be attributed to QIC’s prudent principle of managing the Group’s investment portfolio and pursuing an effective cost discipline.
QIC Group generated a healthy Return on Equity (ROE) of 14.7% for the reporting period. At 31 December 2016, QIC Group’s shareholders’ equity stood at QAR 8.2 billion, up by 42% from QAR 5.8 billion at the end of 2015.
Commenting on the Group’s financial performance in 2016, Group President and CEO Mr. Khalifa Abdulla Turki Al Subaey commented: “Despite global repercussion, which has massively influenced major sectors in the region, QIC Group has witnessed strong business momentum and has performed in line with our expectations.
He added, “The overall performance in 2016 highlights the Group’s well thought out strategy and its successful execution. For 2017 our outlook remains cautiously positive. We shall focus on consolidation and enhance our operational efficiency. With renewed focus on achieving bottom line driven growth, we will continue to maximize value for shareholders, our trusted business partners and customers while supporting development of the sector and the economy.”