Insurance in Bahrain

Bahrain, a tiny island nation in the Persian Gulf, has emerged as a significant player in the Middle East’s financial landscape. As the country experiences rapid economic growth and diversification, the role of insurance in mitigating risks and ensuring financial stability has become increasingly crucial. This article delves into the multifaceted landscape of insurance in Bahrain, tracing its historical roots, examining the current market.


Insurance Companies in Bahrain

Below is the list of insurance companies in Bahrain as updated on 28 December (F.Y. 2023/24). This list includes local or foreign Insurance, Reinsurance, Takaful or Retakaful companies operating in Bahrain. Foreign companies may be operating through their branch office registered in Bahrain. We have not included those companies in this list which are restricted to business outside Bahrain.

  1. ACE American Insurance Company*
  2. Alhilal Life B.S.C. (c)
  3. Alhilal Takaful B.S.C. (c)
  4. American Life Insurance Co.
  5. Arab Insurance Group (B.S.C)
  6. Arabia Insurance Company S.A.L.
  7. Bahrain Kuwait Insurance Company B.S.C.
  8. Bahrain National Insurance Co. B.S.C.
  9. Bahrain National Life Assurance Co. B.S.C. (c)
  10. Cigna Life Insurance Company of Europe S.A.-N.V.
  11. Gulf Insurance Group (Gulf) B.S.C. (c)
  12. Gulf Union Insurance & Reinsurance Co. B.S.C. (c)
  13. Hannover Retakaful B.S.C. (c)
  14. Hannover Rueck SE
  15. Iran Insurance Company
  16. Life Insurance Corporation (International) B.S.C. (c)
  17. LIVA Insurance B.S.C. (c)
  18. Masheed Captive Insurance Company B.S.C. (c)
  19. Medgulf Takaful B.S.C. (c)
  20. Orient Insurance P.J.S.C.
  21. Saudi Arabian Insurance Company B.S.C. (c)
  22. SNIC Insurance B.S.C. (c)
  23. Solidarity Bahrain B.S.C.
  24. Takaful International Co. B.S.C.
  25. T’azur Company B.S.C. (c)
  26. The Mediterranean & Gulf Insurance & Reinsurance Company (Medgulf) B.S.C. (c)**
  27. The New India Assurance Company Ltd.
  28. Trust International Insurance and Reinsurance Co. B.S.C. (c) Trust Re
  29. United Insurance Co. B.S.C. (c)
  30. Zurich Insurance Company
  31. Zurich International Life Ltd.

*Under Liquidation
**Restricted to service existing business

Insurance Brokers in Bahrain

Below is the list of insurance brokers in Bahrain as updated on 28 December (F.Y. 2023/24). We have not included those insurance broker companies in this list which are restricted to business outside Bahrain.

  1. ACE Gallagher Insurance Broker W.L.L.
  2. AF Willis Bahrain W.L.L.
  3. Abir (Bahrain) W.L.L.**
  4. Al Hadaf Insurance
  5. Al Majd Insurance Brokerage W.L.L.
  6. Al Manar Insurance and Reinsurance Brokers Co. W.L.L.
  7. Al Raed Insurance Services
  8. Al Tashilat Insurance Services Co. W.L.L.
  9. Al Wazzan Insurance Broker
  10. Al Zayani Insurance Brokers Co. W.L.L.
  11. Aon Bahrain W.L.L.
  12. Armour Insurance Services W.L.L.
  13. BIMA International Insurance Services S.P.C.**
  14. Bahrain Insurance Brokers Office
  15. Braxtone Insurance and Reinsurance Brokers Co. W.L.L.
  16. Bridge Insurance & Reinsurance Broker W.L.L.
  17. Click Insurance W.L.L.
  18. Crescent Global Insurance Services W.L.L.
  19. Dhaif Insurance Broker
  20. Fakhro Insurance Services W.L.L.
  21. Howden Insurance Brokers W.L.L.
  22. Inter Gulf Insurance Broker W.L.L.
  23. Intershield Company W.L.L.
  24. Isa Al-Mahmeed
  25. LMG (Bahrain) W.L.L.**
  26. Mada Insurance & Reinsurance Broker Company W.L.L.
  27. Marsh (Bahrain) Company W.L.L.
  28. Nexus Financial Services W.L.L.
  29. Patrick York (Ireland) Insurance and Reinsurance Brokers W.L.L.
  30. Protection Insurance Services W.L.L.
  31. Rabia Insurance Services
  32. Towergate Insurance Services W.L.L.
  33. United Gulf Insurance Brokers**

**Restricted to service existing business

Insurance Pool & Syndicate in Bahrain

There are two insurance pool/syndicate that Bahrain participate in, which are:

Arab War Risks Insurance Syndicate (AWRIS)

Established on July 1, 1980, in response to the needs of insurance and reinsurance companies in the Arabian Gulf, the Arab War Risks Insurance Syndicate (AWRIS) originated from collaborative discussions among industry representatives. The pivotal agreement forming the Syndicate was formalized during a significant conference in Kuwait and took effect on January 1, 1981. The Syndicate was created to protect the interests of insurance firms in the Arab Gulf region. Its primary objectives include enhancing the value for member commissions, ensuring fair pricing for war risk insurance coverage for cargo and vessels in the region.

Guided by leading international reinsurers, including Lloyds of London and other A-rated global industry players, AWRIS focuses on preserving the interests of its member companies and aligning with the broader national and economic interests of Arab countries. Through its strategic framework, AWRIS provides essential insurance solutions tailored to the unique challenges posed by geopolitical uncertainties and armed conflicts in the region.

Fair Oil and Energy Insurance Syndicate

The FAIR Oil & Energy Insurance Syndicate, initiated by the Federation of Afro-Asian Insurers & Reinsurers (FAIR), serves as a specialized reinsurer for the Oil & Energy sector. Established with the goal of underwriting business from FAIR Members and other sources in Afro-Asian markets, it commenced operations in October 1999 under the management of Trust Re. It is governed independently by its ‘Syndicate Agreement’ and ‘Articles of Association’. Trust Re’s dedicated stewardship has propelled the Syndicate into a notable position in the Afro-Asian Oil & Energy reinsurance market since its inception in 1999.

History of Insurance in Bahrain

Ancient Roots of Risk-Sharing

The history of insurance in Bahrain has ancient origins, rooted in localized risk-sharing mechanisms within communities. In the early stages of Bahrain’s development, activities centered around pearl diving and fishing relied on these traditional forms of mutual assistance.

Oil Boom and Economic Transformation

The turning point for Bahrain’s insurance industry came with the discovery of oil in the mid-20th century. The subsequent oil boom catalyzed unprecedented economic growth, transforming Bahrain into a hub of economic activities. This marked the recognition of insurance as a critical tool for risk management in a rapidly evolving economy.

Pioneering Insurance Entities

In 1950, Norwich Union, a prominent British insurer, marked a significant milestone. Yusuf bin Ahmed Kanoo was appointed as Norwich Union’s principal agent in Bahrain. In 1955, the Cooperative Compensation Society (CCS), an insurance society, was formed by a group of taxi drivers to provide Third Party Liability insurance coverage for their vehicles. The CCS, later renamed the Vehicle Insurance Fund in 1982, showcased the diversification of insurance services in response to community needs.

In 1961, ALICO started operations, securing the distinction of being the first company to be granted a license to offer long-term insurance products in Bahrain. In 1969, the Bahrain Insurance Company (BIC) was established as a public shareholding company. Later, it merged with another insurance firm to become the Bahrain National Holding Company (BNH), further consolidating the insurance landscape.

Takaful Emergence and Regulatory Framework

While the conventional insurance sector flourished, Takaful, an Islamic alternative, made its foray into Bahrain in 1989. The pioneering force behind Takaful was the Bahrain Islamic Insurance Company (BIIC), later renamed the Takaful International Company in 2005. The Takaful Module, a regulatory framework addressing the business of Takaful, was introduced, ensuring the sector operated in compliance with Islamic principles.

Government Initiatives and Regulatory Framework

Acknowledging the strategic importance of insurance, the Bahraini government took proactive measures to regulate and develop the industry. The Central Bank of Bahrain (CBB) emerged as the key regulatory authority, laying the foundations for a structured and formalized insurance sector. This regulatory framework attracted both local and international players, establishing Bahrain as a regional insurance hub.

21st Century Dynamics

As Bahrain enters the 21st century, the history of insurance continues to evolve. Regulatory enhancements, technological innovations, and a heightened awareness of diverse risks characterize the contemporary landscape. The sector not only safeguards economic interests but also contributes significantly to Bahrain’s status as a dynamic and resilient financial center in the Gulf region.

Adaptability and Resilience

The history of insurance in Bahrain is a testament to its adaptive nature, mirroring the nation’s journey from traditional risk-sharing to a sophisticated and globally connected insurance industry. The sector’s adaptability and resilience position it as an integral component of Bahrain’s economic landscape, ensuring its continued relevance in the face of evolving challenges and opportunities.


The insurance regulator in Bahrain is the Central Bank of Bahrain (CBB). As the primary regulatory authority overseeing the financial sector, the CBB plays a crucial role in supervising and regulating insurance companies within the country. Its mandate encompasses ensuring the stability and integrity of the insurance industry, protecting the interests of policyholders, and maintaining the overall health of the financial market.

The CBB is responsible for licensing and authorizing insurance companies, ensuring that only financially sound and well-managed entities operate in the market. It issues comprehensive guidelines and standards covering various aspects, including financial reporting, solvency requirements, risk management practices, and corporate governance. The regulator actively monitors market conduct to ensure fair treatment of consumers and ethical business practices.

Additionally, the CBB imposes capital adequacy and solvency requirements to ensure insurers maintain a sufficient level of capital to cover potential liabilities. It conducts regular supervisory assessments and enforces compliance with regulatory standards. The regulatory framework aligns with international standards, reflecting Bahrain’s commitment to maintaining a transparent, accountable, and internationally competitive insurance market.