UPDATE 1-Vienna Insurance says no hit from Japan disaster

* Reiterates 2011 guidance

* 2010 embedded value rises 8.5 percent

(Adds details from statement and background)

VIENNA, March 31 (Reuters) – Vienna Insurance Group
(VIGR.VI: Quote, Profile, Research) reiterated its 2011 outlook on Thursday, saying this
month’s huge earthquake and tsunami in Japan would not hit its

The Japan disaster has added to a heavy claims burden facing
insurers in the first quarter, following an earthquake in New
Zealand and a storm and floods in Australia.

Zurich Financial (ZURN.VX: Quote, Profile, Research) said on Thursday it expected
Asia-Pacific claims of around $500 million [ID:nLDE72U05A],
while the world’s top two reinsurers, Munich Re (MUVGn.DE: Quote, Profile, Research) and
Swiss Re (RUKN.VX: Quote, Profile, Research), face claims of well over $1 billion each in
Japan alone. [ID:nN23261954]

Vienna had said in January it expected pretax profit to rise
around 10 percent and saw a single-digit increase in premiums in
2011. It had proposed raising its dividend to 1 euro per share
from 0.9 after 2010 pretax profit rose 15 percent.

It aims to decrease its combined ratio this year to about 97
percent from 98.4 percent in 2010.

“However, this can only be achieved if the economic and
legal framework does not deteriorate significantly and if the
damage caused by natural catastrophes does not develop
dramatically,” it said.

Vienna said on Thursday its embedded value after taxes
increased 8.5 percent to 5.1 billion euros ($7.17 billion) at
the end of 2010, from a restated 4.7 billion a year earlier.

The Lloyd’s of London insurance market said on Wednesday it
has enough capital to withstand a Japanese quake generating
insured losses of up to $64 billion.

That compares with the $20 billion to $30 billion hit from
the March 11 disaster expected by risk-modellers AIR Worldwide.
[ID:nLDE72T07R] [ID:nN25241622]

($1=.7110 Euro)

(Reporting by Michael Shields; Editing by David Hulmes)

UPDATE 1-Vienna Insurance says no hit from Japan disaster