Royal & SunAlliance is to offer voluntary redundancy to 50 account processors whose jobs are to be transferred to India.

Although no timescale has been fixed for the project, it could, “depending on its success”, lead to more work being transferred abroad. UK unions fear this could lead to future job losses.

MSF national secretary for insurance Ken Perry said: “Obviously we're not happy at all. The moving of insurance jobs to India is a trend that may occur more widely in the insurance industry. A solution is required on a more global or governmental level.”

An RSA spokesperson said: “Basically, it is part of the process of making ourselves more competitive. This is a pilot exercise, no more.”