Zurich Financial Services' (ZFS) non-life result from the UK, Ireland and South Africa slipped by 9% in 2002.

The business operating profit fell to $107m (£67.6m) from $117m (£73.9m) the previous year.

Gross written premiums and net earned premiums both increased by 24%.

Gross written premiums increased to $4.8bn (£3.03bn) from $3.6bn (£2.2bn) and net earned premiums increased to $3.6bn (£2.2bn) from $2.9bn (£1.8bn). The business unit's expense ratio rose slightly, to 23%, from its 2001 position at 22.8%.

Overall the group posted a $3.4bn (£2.1bn) net loss for 2002 after reserve strengthening and special provisions.