The National Insurance Commission (NIC), in collaboration with GIZ, has developed a microinsurance scheme as a means of improving access to insurance to the ordinary Ghanaian.
The development of suitable microinsurance products and the emergence of innovative channels have resulted in a massive improvement in the number of policies sold or lives covered.
According to the Commissioner of Insurance, Ms Lydia Lariba Bawa, the NIC was still in collaboration with GIZ, which is the German government’s federal enterprise for international cooperation, to seek further improvement in access to insurance as the penetration rate was still very low.
Opening the East Legon branch office of Phoenix Insurance in Accra at the weekend, the commissioner said the insurance industry had made significant improvement by crossing the billion — cedi mark in terms of gross premiums in 2013.
She said the insurance industry had also seen some significant development over the past few years and foreign participation in the industry had increased tremendously with the entry into the market of some of the world’s biggest insurance companies.
The move, according to the commissioner, would generate a positive competition resulting in lower prices and improved service delivery to the insuring public.
Ms Bawa said the informal sector operators such as artisans, petty traders, fishermen, and small-scale farmers among others are still largely uninsured.
“A research conducted by NIC and GTZ found out that lack of knowledge and trust were the major impediments to insurance uptake, especially in the low income segment and the NIC has worked in the appropriate ways of educating the general public on insurance generally,” she said.
The Board Chairman of Phoenix Insurance, Mr Emmanuel Adu-Sarkodee, said since coming under a new board and management in 2007, the company had been repositioned in the market and had not only become very resilient but had grown from strength to strength.
He said the energy and corporate renewal ignited some seven years ago continued to empower the company and propel it to greater heights with its brand equity surging.
Mr Adu-Sarkodee said the new branch at East Legon was one of the crucial piece in the grand scheme of the company to delight its clients with the most pleasurable insurance services by bringing its brand of insurance excellence and advantage even closer to them.
“Our clients — most of whom have been with us from the beginning — can continue to expect the very best in service excellence, from product design, innovation, integrity and robust technological backbone among others,” he said.
The Managing Director of Phoenix Insurance, Mr Sonny Heward-Mills, said the company had seen significant growth over the years, particularly the past seven years, thus making it one of the fastest-growing insurance companies in the country.
He said from an annual premium of 2.4 million in 2007, it had consistently grown the business and in 2013 underwrote business with a gross premium income of 24 million and despite the economic challenges this year, the company hopes to do better than last year.
“We have equally demonstrated our commitment to providing absolute peace of mind to our cherished clients by the speed with which we settle and pay genuine and legitimate claims. In the past three years we have paid claims in excess of 15 million Ghana cedis.
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