British insurer Aviva said on Thursday it had swung back into profit during the first half, recovering from a huge write-down suffered the previous year. Net profit stood at £693 million ($1.07 billion, 806 million euros) in the six months to the end of June compared with a losses after tax of £688 million during the first half of 2012 -- also on reduced costs and a jump in new product sales. Last year, Aviva tumbled into a net loss owing mainly to a massive write-down following the sale of its US business. The insurer said on Thursday that operating profit -- an indicator of its day-to-day business -- rose 5.0 percent to £1.0 billion in the first half of 2013 compared with the equivalent period last year. \"These results show satisfactory progress in Aviva\'s turnaround,\" chief executive Mark Wilson said in an earnings statement. \"Our key measure of sales -- value of new business -- has increased 17 percent, driven by the UK, France, Poland, Turkey and Asia,\" added the New Zealander who took up the top post in January. The group is in the process of cutting 2,000 jobs worldwide as part of plans to axe costs by £400 million. Aviva is also withdrawing from 16 non-core business areas following a major strategic review that was aimed at strengthening its capital base and share price. Aviva may meanwhile sell its stake in its Indian joint-venture life insurance firm as part of its turnaround drive, media reports said this week.