Bahrain insurance records 22% growth


BAHRAIN: Bahrain's reputation in the region's insurance sector continues to develop as it records 22 per cent growth in 2006, which is strongest-ever in recent years. According to experts gahering in Manama this week, Bahrain's insurance sector is continuiously showing growth, as both the size of the market and the regulatory framework evolves.
 Central Bank of Bahrain (CBB) statistics show a 22 per cent rise in gross premiums in 2006, marking the sector's strongest-ever annual growth of recent years, driven by increasing public awareness and acceptance of the importance of insurance. The ongoing development of the market was celebrated at a gathering of financial industry professionals at a major event held at the Ritz Carlton this week.
 The 1st Bahrain Nexus Awards Ceremony honoured leading representatives for their contribution to growing the company and developing the industry. "It was an important event where we were able to demonstrate the importance of their involvement in our company's ongoing success to all our colleagues, partners and supporters.
 Nexus is an organization with a sense of purpose and a tremendous appetite for growth - and many of the people we honoured at the awards are helping to drive its development," said Nexus owner and CEO Mahmoud Nodjoumi. In terms of market scale, in the area of Takaful (Islamic) insurance alone, Bahrain has now eclipsed Kuwait -- previously the largest GCC market -- following the Bahraini government's BHD1.6 billion ($4.2 billion) contract award earlier this month.
 As the region's largest independent financial advisor, Nexus is experiencing high growth levels in Bahrain, with an increase in sales of 25 per cent since the company was launched following a management buy-out in September 2006. Speakers at the event noted that the advanced regulatory framework put in place by the Bahraini government has aligned with Nexus's strategy for investing in the training and development of its people.
 The company has supported almost three-quarters of its employees to take and pass the Financial Advisers' International Qualification (FAIQ) accredited by the UK Chartered Institute of Insurance. The most recent successful graduates of the course received a special recognition during the ceremony. Launched in September 2006, Nexus has offices in Bahrain, Dubai and Abu Dhabi, and has plans to develop a global financial services brand from within the Middle East.



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