UK-based Standard Life has reported that its worldwide life and pensions new business sales increased 8% to GBP4.48 billion for the first quarter of 2008.

The UK life and pensions sales increased 6% to GBP3.52 billion. The worldwide life and pensions net flows increased 31% to GBP986 million. The UK life and pensions net inflows increased 42% to GBP826 million.

For the first quarter of 2008, the life and pensions sales in Europe were 24% lower than the prior year in constant currency.

Sandy Crombie, Standard Life’ group CEO, said: In the UK, we’ve seen robust performance against a strong comparative period. Net flows and sales both increased and we successfully reinsured GBP6.7 billion of annuities to reduce the longevity risk borne by our shareholders.