State Bank of India (SBI), an India-based public sector lender, has expressed confidence to divest stakes in life and general insurance entities by the end of 2015.

SBI manages two insurance subsidiaries – SBI Life Insurance and SBI General Insurance. In SBI Life Insurance, the Indian bank holds 74% stake, while France-based BNP Paribas Cardif owns the remaining 26%, reported Press Trust of India (PTI).

In SBI General Insurance, SBI shareholding is 74% and its Australian counterpart Insurance Australia Group (IAG) owns the remaining stake.

The bank said that the valuation process for the stake sale in its insurance units has started and the transaction is expected to be concluded by the year end.

SBI chairwoman Arundhati Bhattacharya was quoted by PTI as saying: "The talks are going on. As you know both of our insurance partners have given letters saying they would like to dial up.

"The valuations are going on and we have to come to some kind of understanding and an agreement on those valuations before that dial up can happen."

Earlier in July, Bhattacharya had said that BNP Paribas Cardiff is willing to raise its stake from 26% to 36%, while IAG has expressed interest to boost its shareholding to 49% from the current 26%.

SBI Life Insurance offers a range of life insurance and pension products, whereas SBI General Insurance provides property and casualty insurance such as motor insurance, car insurance, home insurance, fire insurance.