One out of every four people do not think that life insurance is important, reveals an Irda sponsored study, which also made a case for effective marketing to increase penetration.

The study which was conducted by Delhi-based think-tank NCAER at the behest of insurance regulator Irda, suggested that private sector and the government should work together in Public-Private Partnership (PPP) mode to enhance awareness about the benefits of insurance specially in the age group of 20-30 years.

There is a low propensity for life insurance whereby one-fourth of the households did not consider life insurance as important," the study found.

It said that people, specially in rural areas, are not able to clearly understand the extent of coverage being offered under particular insurance plan which results in low penetration.
25% don't think life insurance is important
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The insurance companies or the regulatory authority need to step up efforts to improve the awareness levels across the country, the study noted.

It also suggested different insurance packages for rural poor and urban populace and also highlighted the importance of micro insurance.

Public policy should address insurance awareness needs of the people, the study said, adding that a mass media awareness campaign would help reach out to the untapped market.

It is essential that awareness creation interventions be undertaken targeting the 20-30 year age group, it said.

As per estimates, insurance penetration in India dropped to 5.1% in 2010-11 fiscal, from 5.2% in 2009-10.

While life insurance penetration fell to 4.4% during the year, from 4.6%, general insurance sector saw an increase in penetration from 0.6% in 2009 to 0.7% in 2010.