As part of moves at deepening financial Inclusion in the insurance sector, the National Insurance Commission (NAICOM) has announced plans to launch Nigerian Insurance Industry Development Plan (NIIDP).
This is coming as the insurance sector is challenged to deploy mobile phones technology for the implementation of micro insurance.
Mohammed Kari, Commissioner for Insurance (CFI) in Nigeria, who announced the plan on Monday, at the opening ceremony of the 2018 National Insurance Conference in Abuja, said the plan had been presented to the Insurers Committee, CEOs of insurance companies, heads of insurance trade associations and the Chartered Insurance Institute of Nigeria (CIIN) to ensure every player in the industry is on the same page.
He asked how the insurance sector in Nigeria could effectively and efficiently navigate this turn to increase the number of policyholders while reducing the figure of the financially excluded, are part of what the NIIDP contain?
Kari said: “It was Christine Laggard, the Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) at the 2014 International Forum for Financial Inclusion held in Mexico who said and I quote: “The poor do not have access to basic financial services such as payments, savings and insurance. Accessing financial services will help families increase investment and consumption, help in insuring against unfavorable events thus reducing the poverty level during any occurrence.
“In 2012, Nigeria launched the National Financial Inclusion Strategy (NFIS) to reduce the percentage of adults that are excluded from financial services from 46.3% in 2010 to 20% in 2020. The strategic goals are driven by a broad range of coordinated interventions, including simplified Know Your Customer (KYC) regulations, Agent banking, Micro insurance and Consumer Protection principles.
“In realization of the National Financial Inclusion target for the Insurance sector and the need to deepened insurance penetration, NAICOM did focus on two objectives namely, Insurance awareness campaign for the financially excluded and Promoting the development of products and business models that meet the needs of the these excluded groups.”
Jim Ovia,Chairman, Zenith Group, who was the guest speaker at the event, said financial inclusion can be implemented through micro insurance scheme which is working in other country.
He urged the Nigeria insurance commission(NAICOM), Nigeria communication commission(NCC)and the Central bank of Nigeria(CBN) to collaborate in deploring mobile phones technology in implementation of micro insurance, adding that the regulatory body had to give an approval to digital micro insurance.
He listed why the rural areas were finically excluded to include: infrastructure adequacy in rural areas, people are not educated, premium of the traditional scheme are too expensive, complex product and distrust for the insurance which some perceive as fraudsters.
According to him, “Out of about 96.4million Adult Population in Nigeria, 50% adult population is financially excluded, 23% have no formal education, how do you financially include them?
“With 60% owning a mobile phone, it’s the tool to include them in financially.”