Nigeria: NAICOM to Train Journalists on Micro-Insurance
By Nnamdi Duru, This Day Live
As part of effort to deepen insurance penetration using micro-insurance platforms, the National Insurance Commission (NAICOM) has elected to train reporters on the emerging and important means of delivering insurance services to low income earners.
The programme with theme, “Making Insurance Work for All: The Micro Insurance Initiative”, is scheduled to hold in Calabar this week.
Before now, many operators believed that micro-insurance was tantamount to a reduction in the perils covered and sum insured of any particular product with a view to reducing the cost of insuring to accommodate low income earners.
The Team Leader of the International Labour Organisation (ILO) Micro-insurance Innovation Facility, Mr. Craig Churchill, “micro-insurance is not just a scaled down version of regular insurance… the product and processes need to be completely reengineered to meet the characteristics and preferences of the low-income market.”
“It is not a specific product or product line. It is also not limited to a specific provider type. Micro-insurance is the provision of cover to a specific market segment, i.e. low income persons”, he said.
Faced with the challenges of rising operational and claim costs, insurance operators and professionals in the country sought for new ways of bringing down their costs with a view to shoring up the profitability of insurance business.
They have also realised the underlying fallacies behind the supremacy of big premium wholesale insurance and government businesses and are now looking for difference avenues of increasing their profitability without necessarily broaden their revenue base.
The above scenario engendered a shift in of focus to retail insurance as a viable alternative and as such they are collaborating with relevant operators with a view to reaching the ultimate consumers with their products and services.
They also toyed with bancassurance; an arrangement that enables insurance companies make their products available to the grassroots inside banking halls was the order of the day before the latest reversal of universal banking.
However, not satisfied with the results, the operators are now investing huge resources to build enduring micro-insurance platforms, even as this has gained ground across the African and Asian markets.