Poised to improve insurance services and deepen insurance penetration at the grass root, the insurance industry regulator, the National Insurance Commission (NAICOM) have said it will be focusing on market development in 2020.
The Acting commissioner for Insurance, Sunday Thomas, disclosed this at the 2020 seminar for insurance journalists in the country held in Kano, Kano State that the second phase of the MDRI will soon be unveiled and it will mark out clear targets and tasks for all stakeholders in the industry. He said, “going forward, we shall vigorously pursue the continued implementation of Compulsory Insurances in every nook and crannies of the Country. We are certainly not unaware of the challenges inhibiting the successful implementation of these classes of insurance thus far hence, our resolve to work with relevant stakeholders to ensure a seamless drive. Indeed the successful implementation of compulsory classes of insurance across the nation will ensure adequate protection of our strategic National Assets.”
Speaking on its plans for 2020, he said , the commission will be working with the relevant security agencies to guarantee effective and efficient monitoring of compliance.Speaking further on recapitalization, he said the essence of the recapitalisation is a move to ensure that the industry becomes more robust in its technical competence and financial base, building confidence, trust and enhancing market value. This is aimed at repositioning the sector for self-actualization in terms of growth and development.
“The financial inclusion strategy has been central to the Federal Government developmental plan and the Commission has over the years invested hugely in the development of financial inclusion mechanisms which includes the introduction of Microinsurance and Takaful Insurance products. The introduction of these lines of insurance is intended to deepen the penetration of insurance in the country and bring into the fold majority of the populace that are hitherto excluded. So far, some milestones have been recorded in this regard with three standalone Microinsurance and four Takaful insurance companies already granted approvals.”The Commission shall continue to deploy more energy and resources in building public trust and confidence in insurance despite years of poor perception.
On annuity, he said the business has impacted positively on the industry, adding that the public is becoming more exposed and knowledgeable about the workings of Annuity, this he said will continue as the future is looking very bright for the business.
He assured that the Commission is committed to ensuring financial soundness and viability of the insurers and the adequate protection of policyholders at all times. These, he said will continue to be part of our regulatory priorities.
On claims he said “We will continue to ensure that genuine claims are promptly paid while also ensuring a reasonable protection of investments of shareholders.He added that in demonstrating its willingness to protect the policyholders, the Commission has further strengthened its Complaint Bureau Unit to respond to public complaints over claims settlement. Available statistics have shown that there have been great improvement in this area.”Ensuring the right pricing of insurance products and effective deployment of technology for ease of transaction are among the key areas the Commission will be emphasising this year.
“Digitalisation of insurance business is no longer an option, but an imperative which we all have to work towards its actualisation. As we may all be aware, the industry is currently lagging behind other financial services sectors in this area. The Commission is working vigorously to see that all its operations are digitalised.
He stressed that 2020 is a year for us to turnaround the fortunes of the industry and this cannot be accomplished without digitalising our processes and encouraging the industry to imbibe same.
The Commission shall in the course of the year will continue to introduce new reforms and initiatives in line with international best practices for attaining the level of growth and development we all desire for the sector.