Qatar General Insurance to stop issuing new insurance policies in Dubai

DUBAI, Nov 26 (Reuters) - Qatar General Insurance and Reinsurance Company said on Monday it would stop issuing any new insurance policies from its Dubai office and start winding down its business at the branch.

The company gave no detail as to whether the move was linked to a regional rift that started in June 2017 when Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Bahrain cut diplomatic and trade links with Qatar.

The firm, which said in December last year it had decided to exit the Dubai insurance market, said it would cease issuing new insurance policies as of Monday.

Another Qatari insurer, Qatar Insurance, said in November last year it had renewed the business licence for the company’s branch in Abu Dhabi, more than two months after saying it would close because of a regional political row.

The United Arab Emirates represents Qatar General Insurance and Reinsurance Company’s only overseas market and in 2017 contributed gross premiums of 61.8 million riyals ($17.0 million), compared to 505.2 million riyals in Qatar, according to its annual report for that year.

As a result of the fallout from the diplomatic row, some UAE companies and banks have shied away from business with banks in the UAE with Qatari shareholders, Reuters reported on Sunday, citing sources. ($1 = 3.6400 Qatar riyals) (Reporting By Tom Arnold Editing by Matthew Mpoke Bigg)