UAE-based Orient Insurance has reportedly deferred its plan to launch operations in Saudi Arabia due to the impact of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic on economy.

According to the reports, the company has deferred its expansion plans in Saudi Arabia to 2022.

Orient Insurance was expected to start its branch operation in the country this year after obtaining the necessary remaining regulatory approvals.

The company anticipates that the delay would allow the country to recover from the economic impacts of the pandemic and ‘allow for a more powerful entry in the market’.

Orient Insurance has been quoted by Arabian business as stating in its a filing to the Dubai Financial Market: “Due to the ongoing development resulting out of the spread of the pandemic Covid-19 and the subsequent restrictions on movement and traveling resulting in disruption in economy and trade during the past period, the company has decided to postpone the start of the business that was expected during the current year, to the middle of the year 2022.”

Saudi Arabia Monetary Agency (SAMA) has reportedly approved the two-year delay plan of the Orient Insurance.

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Last year, the company acquired SAMA’s approval to establish branches in Saudi Arabia with a capital of AED300m.