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Takaful insurer, reinsurer granted Bahrain license


MANAMA, Bahrain—Dubai Islamic Insurance & Reinsurance Co. and several investors have been granted a license by the Bahrain Central Bank to establish a new takaful insurer in Bahrain.

Aman Bahrain Insurance Co. has been formed with $20 million in capital from Dubai Islamic Insurance & Reinsurance, Al Salam Bank and other investors.

A spokeswoman said the new insurer has not yet announced what coverages it will write.

Sultan Saeed Al Mansoori, chairman of Dubai Islamic Insurance & Reinsurance, said in a statement that the new insurer's formation was prompted by feasibility studies that "showed a high demand for Islamic takaful insurance" in Bahrain.

That demand was "the main reason that encouraged us to establish an Islamic insurance comp any in Bahrain," he said.

Meanwhile, the Monetary Authority of Singapore earlier this month authorized SCOR Asia-Pacific to apply to the Labuan Offshore Financial Services Authority for an extension to its nonlife branch license in Labuan, Malaysia, to underwrite retakaful reinsurance contracts.

SCOR Asia-Pacific, the Singapore-based arm of French reinsurance group SCOR S.A., opened a branch in Labuan in 2000. The Labuan branch will be the base for the group's Islamic finance retakaful activities in Asia.

SCOR said it believes that the demand for takaful reinsurance has "high growth potential," particularly in Asia and in the Middle East.

Adrian Ladbury contributed to this report.