* Q1 profit 6.15 bln yuan vs 5.3 bln yuan a year-earlier
* Renewal premiums leap 51.6 pct on-year
* Premiums up despite regulatory tightening
SHANGHAI, April 27 (Reuters) - China Life Insurance Co Ltd
, the country's biggest insurer by market
value, reported a 17.1 percent rise in first-quarter profit on
Thursday, on strong premium growth.
China Life said net profit for the quarter rose to 6.15
billion yuan ($892.24 million) in the first three months of the
year, compared with 5.3 billion yuan a year earlier.
The insurer's renewal premiums soared 51.6 percent on year,
hitting 112.76 billion yuan, while first-year regular premiums
were up 17.4 percent to 60.3 billion yuan from the same period a
The growth comes despite last year's crackdown that saw
regulators reining in insurers' overseas acquisitions and
tightening control over the use of funds.
Hong Kong-listed Chinese life insurers had average total
written premium growth of 19 percent last year, driven by almost
30 percent growth in the individual agent channel, according to
an April Moody's report.
China Life reported a lower annual profit for the first time
in four years for 2016, saying interest rates had dragged down
investment income by more than a fifth.
($1 = 6.4774 Chinese yuan)
(Reporting by Engen Tham in SHANGHAI and Shu Zhang in BEIJING;
Editing by Stephen Coates and Christopher Cushing)