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India Post to invest in stocks for better returns

Written by: Staff

New Delhi, Apr 13 (UNI) The government has allowed the Department of Posts (DoP) to invest Rs 10,000 crores from its life insurance scheme in the stock market The Finance Ministry has allowed the department to keep these funds with special deposits, Secretary, DoP U Srinivasa Ragahavan said.

The department must find outside investment opportunities including investment in the stock markets, he said.

The special depository rates on investments in the two schemes of DoP Postal Life Insurance and Rural Postal Life Insurance (RPLI) would not be available after September 30, 2006, Mr Raghavan said .

The DoP has sought level-playing field from the government to operate its insurance schemes to enable people in urban areas to opt for the schemes considering lower premium and higher bonus.

Mr Raghavan said the Department had appointed global consultant, A F Fergusson to look into investment option for the schemes and that the matter was under examination.

India Post is transforming itself into a high-growth business organisation by focusing on customers, technology and people, Mr Raghavan said.

''From a Government bureaucracy, today Post office is changing to be a customer responsive and forward looking organisation,'' he added.

Despite fierce competition, its revenue and productivity are soaring, its customer base enlarging and its business performance growing fast. The business results of India Post for 2005-06 reveal that Post Office business in the area of Speed Post and its premium services has touched Rs 1197 crores with a growth of 25.6 % over the previous year.

From a revenue of just Rs 100 crores in 1997-98, in a span of 8 years, Speed Post, the flagship brand of India Post and its premium services have leaped to Rs 1197 crores in 2005-06.

From Rs 100 crore revenue in 1997-98 the department's revenue has gone up to Rs 1197 crores.

Maharashtra circle tops the revenue list with Rs 289 crores followed by Delhi (Rs 166 crores), Tamil Nadu ( Rs 127 crores) , Andhra Pradesh (Rs 111 crores), Uttar Pradesh (Rs 85 crores) Karnataka (Rs 68 crores) and West Bengal ( Rs 65 crores) During the current year, India Post expect the business to grow by more than 25 per cent.

Post Office has been in the life insurance business since 1884 and it is the largest life insurance provider in the rural India.

While Postal Life Insurance has a mandate to insure the lives of the employees of the Government and local bodies in the urban areas, Rural Postal Life Insurance caters to the common man in the rural India.

The business growth of Rural Postal Life Insurance has been quite impressive and no other Insurance provider is able to penetrate into the rural India like India Post, Mr Raghavan said.

The total business procured from PLI and RPLI during 2005-06 was a massive Rs 13,812 crores, as compared to Rs 11,038 crores in the previous year, with a growth of 25.14 per cent.

India Post and Western Union business tie-up for International Money Transfer services enables customers to get their money through post office network in less than 10 minutes through induction of sophisticated technology. Through this service, 898000 customers have been benefited in the last year with a total annual inflow of Rs 1704 crores. India Post has earned Rs 23 crores as remuneration from the money transfer services, as against Rs 11 crores in the previous year.

UNI RT PV GC1650 Mutual funds: Total collections under Mutual Funds is Rs 2.13 crores As far technology, the Department has planned to computerize all the departmental post offices and network them with a view to provide better access to the customers to improve the efficiency and to reduce the cost of operations. During this year, as a part of the 10th Five Year Plan, 1500 more post offices will be computerized with an outlay of Rs 300 crores through a central server more than 6184 post offices have been fully computerized and in the next few years, all the departmental post offices will be totally computerized and networked India Post is required to deliver mails to every household and business in the country, both urban and rural.

The immediate challenge for India Post is to make sure that it provides a customer friendly and continues to add value We see exciting growth prospects including the development of new products and expansion into new markets.

The Retail Post business has turned out to be a promising growth area. Under Retail Post we offer a variety of services including the collection of electricity bills, telephone bills, We will only succeed if we delier high quality services which meets the needs of the customers

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