Interface Newshub
Banking and FinanceNews

Finance Minister Inaugurates, Charges NAICOM Board on Insurance Penetration

..,……… Commissions Regulator's Online Portal. ….Board Chairman Promises Sector Repositioning

The governing board of the National Insurance Commission (NAICOM) was Friday inaugurated by the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Shamsuna Ahmed.
The board has as its chairman Dr. Abubakar Sani, while Chief (Barrister) Robert Ohuoba, Ijeoma Chinenye Ekeocha and Alhaji Muazu Barau are members The 10-member board has other institutional members.
While congratulating the new board members, the minister used the opportunity to inform them of the steps taken by the federal government to provide an enabling environment for the growth of the sector.
These include the repeal of section 16 of CITA as amended by Finance Act 2019 and the review of minimum capital requirements for insurance and re-insurance companies (Finance Act 2020).
She challenged the board to reciprocate the President’s confidence in them “by bringing your wealth of experience to bear on the activities of the Commission and the Insurance industry at large”.
“ It is your responsibility to ensure good corporate governance is entrenched in the Commission, support management in creating enabling environment for both the staff and other stakeholders and ensure harmony within the Board”, the Minister added.
She also stressed “the need for the Board and Management to evolve policies and create new insurance products as well as build the desired trust and confidence in the minds of Nigerians with a view to enhancing insurance penetration.
Responding, the newly inaugurated Chairman of the board, Dr. Abubakar Sani thanked the federal government for the appointment, promising to reposition the industry before their time on the borad is over.
“It is my pleasure to stand before you today at this epoch-making event that is the inauguration of the board of NAICOM, my colleagues and I hereby thank the Federal Government under the leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari, for the opportunity to make our dogged contributions. We hereby pledge that we will add tremendous value to the Insurance Industry, and leave it better when we are done with our time there”, the chairman said.
“The vision of NAICOM is to be the leading Insurance Regulator in the emerging market, we will encourage the necessary strategic framework to achieve this, by membership of commission of peer review mechanism that conforms with global regulatory best practices. The board would also encourage mutually beneficial relationships by NAICOM, with some regulatory authorities in some jurisdictions with similar economic outlook as Nigeria. Similarly the board will align with the vision of NAICOM to conduct effective supervision. It will support the management and staff of the commission, to enforce discipline in the market and compliance with the code of ethics of insurance profession.”
“It is pertinent to address some contemporary industry issues, as the adviser to the Federal Government on Insurance matters, NAICOM would seek to collaborate more closely with the Due Process Office and other relevant agencies of government on Insurance services procurement. Also, the board will take seriously the enforcement of compulsory insurance and the incidence of fake insurances by giving management and staff of the commission, all the necessary support to carry on”.
“Accordingly, the Market Development and Structure Initiative will get the funding to deal with this. African Insurance industry is the second largest growing in the world and is expected to expand at the CAGR of 7% despite Covid-19 of 2020, between 2020 and 2025. Although the overall growth rate is strong, it is generally segmented by country, for example South Africa has a growth rate of 1%, due to its size and saturation as a developed market. Whereas Nigeria has roughly 8%. Despite the encouraging growth figures, Nigeria’s penetration rate remains low at around 3%, with South Africa and Namibia having over 10%.”
“The board will proactively look to promote different policies and initiatives that will deepen insurance penetration, thereby ensuring that more Nigerians and assets are insured. In addition, the compulsory insurance policies, trade credit and guarantee insurance policies are currently untapped, and could be instrumental to improving the market penetration. One of the main challenges operators are facing is the unhealthy competition and difficulties in finding matching assets to back technical provisions. The board will work with the relevant government agencies, to tackle these challenges. For instance, we believe in creating a vehicle that narrows anonymity of operators to find suitable matching assets to back technical provisions that promotes penetration substantially”.
“Finally, the board recognizes the need for a trained and motivated work force that would drive the mission and vision of NAICOM. The board will therefore aggressively support and encourage collaboration with other regulatory agencies in knowledge sharing. The board will also provide living wages and several other welfare packages to secure commitment and the future of staff. We will make NAICOM a place to be proud to work in. Honourable minister, we thank you for the confidence repose in us by the government, we assure you that the board of NAICOM will bring credible leadership to the insurance industry, such that it makes more robust contribution for the gross domestic product of the country”. He promised that the Board will encourage beneficial collaboration with regulatory bodies of
The Chairman has put in over 35 years in the industry and currently consults for the Federal Mortgage Bank, Bauchi State, Oyo State among several others.

In a related development the minister also commissioned the insurance regulator’s online portal shortly after the inauguration of the board.
In her speech she suggested a future outlook for the industry while expressing the hope that with the commissioning of the portal, the days of low insurance penetration and fake insurance policies would soon be over.
In her words, “in conclusion, I want to encourage the industry to adopt new and disruptive technologies like mobile technology, cloud computing, Artificial intelligence, Blockchain, Data analytics and Internet of things in driving and supporting its business.
“On this premise, I commend the Commission for being in the forefront of this and for incepting initiatives in this direction including Guidelines for Web Aggregators and Regulatory Sandbox, introduction of BIMA Lab Insurtech Accelerator Program. However, I believe there is a need for Regulatory framework for Insurtech companies to guide and supervise their operation without inhibiting their innovation. The Commission should look into this.

“I believe with the commissioning of the NAICOM Portal today, the long overdue digital transformation of the insurance industry has begun with the attendant effect of increased penetration, reduction in the number of fake insurance policies, efficient service delivery and improving public trust in Insurance.

Related posts

Why CBN Revoked Licenses of 132 MFBs, 4 PMIs, 3 Finance Coys

Dayo Omoogun

Minister Extols Aide’s Commitment To Women Issues

Blessing Etim

NAPTAN Confers Life Time Achievement Award on Aregbesola

Dayo Omoogun

Leave a Comment