LONDON - Britain proposed new rules on Thursday to help regulators close down struggling insurers without disrupting markets or hitting policyholders.

Regulators across the world introduced rules to wind down banks smoothly without taxpayer aid after governments had to bail out collapsing lenders in the global financial crisis over a decade ago.

Attention is now turning to other parts of the financial system.

"Such a regime would provide powers to take prompt action to stabilise and manage an insurer that is failing or likely to fail, subject to appropriate safeguards," the finance ministry said in a consultation paper.

"In line with the government’s ongoing commitment to global standards in financial services, the proposed regime would aim to implement the key relevant international standards within the UK," the paper said.

(Reporting by Huw Jones; Editing by Frank Jack Daniel)