Chief Minister Datuk Seri Musa Aman said despite challenges in this sector, he was pleased to note that Progressive Insurance was on track to achieving its goals.
"Given your track record of efficient management and commitment to your core business, I am sure that you will do well again," he said, when receiving the dividend from Progressive at Sutera Marina Club on Monday.
"I am pleased to note that 2013 was your best year in your 40 year history, despite having lost a major customer.
Your ability to grow by 9.2 per cent against the industry growth of 6.4 per cent speaks volumes of your management capabilities.
"You have been consistent in declaring dividends to your shareholders, including the Sabah State Government. This evening, the State Government is pleased to receive a dividend payment of RM6,718,596 million from Progressive Insurance.
"We view Progressive Insurance as an important partner, as it is through dividends that we are able to boost socio-economic programmes for the people, and further develop the State," he said.
Musa, who is also State Finance Minister, said in order to keep up in this competitive environment and the fast paced global economy that brings fresh challenges, it was necessary for insurance companies to think out of the box to retain clients and to create new and better products to meet market needs, and to attract new clients.
"Some clients seek to increase the value of their investments, while others may have needs that will ensure their businesses and livelihoods are protected. There is a need to always be mindful of what clients want, and to be receptive to their requirements.
"As a key shareholder, the Sabah State Government wishes to encourage you to remain on your toes on changes in financial markets and the insurance sector.
"This will allow you to take immediate steps to overcome projected challenges whenever a problem or issue starts impacting the insurance industry.
"With a forward looking management team, and with investment that the company has put in training its employees and agents, I am confident that Progressive Insurance will announce higher dividends for your shareholders in coming years," he said.
Musa also called on Progressive Insurance to offer relevant and attractive packages to meet demand from new and existing business ventures in Sabah, and beyond.
He said Sabah's development was on track due to political stability and our commitment to improve on basic infrastructure with the support of the Federal Government.
He said investors remained interested in what Sabah has to offer, such as through the oil and gas sector, apart from agriculture, tourism and manufacturing.