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Vienna Insurance sees 22% slump in pre-tax profit on COVID-19 related write-offs

VIENNA, Aug 10 (Reuters) - Vienna Insurance Group said on Monday it expects pre-tax profit for the January-June period to slump 22% after booking 120 million euros ($141 million) of pandemic related write-offs on assets in Bulgaria, Croatia and Georgia.

The Austrian group said it expects profit before tax to come in at around 200 million euros in the first half. The results will be published on Aug. 26.

Vienna Insurance Group blamed a significant increase in discount rates due to COVID-19 for the impairment charges and said it was not possible to provide a full-year forecast due to low visibility.

The insurer stuck to its 2019 dividend proposal of 1.15 euros per share, which is due to be approved at the annual shareholders meeting on Sept. 25. ($1 = 0.8499 euros) (Reporting by Kirsti Knolle; Editing by Kirsten Donovan)