New China Life Insurance will delay its initial public offering – worth up to US$1 billion – until at least 2009 due to a prolonged investigation of the firm, according to one of its shareholders, the South China Morning Post reported. China's fourth-largest coverage insurer will first complete the reorganization of its board before deciding on its listing plan and other strategies, according to Zhang Hongwei, chairman of Orient Group, one of the mainland's largest privately-owned firms, which also owns 13% of the insurer. In 2005, New China Life canceled planned listings on mainland exchanges due to the ban on new domestic share offerings. Instead, the insurer looked to go public in Hong Kong, but put off plans due to an investigation into its chairman for tax evasion. In the meantime, its two largest rivals, China Life Insurance and Ping An Insurance, which are already listed in Hong Kong, completed their stock offerings in Shanghai recently, becoming the first two listed insurance companies in the city.