BusinessDay

Go digital or find another sector to operate, NAICOM warn insurers

The National Insurance Commission (NAICOM) has warned insurance companies operating in the country to go digital or find another sector to operate.

According to NAICOM, this is the way to go now to position the insurance sector for expected growth and efficiency.

Sunday Thomas, commissioner for Insurance gave the warning during a closed door meeting with Chief Executive Officers of Insurance companies on the sideline of the recently held 2022 Insurance Professional Forum organised by the Chartered Insurance Institute of Nigeria held in Abeokuta, Ogun State.

According to the feelers accessed by Business Day, Thomas said, “it seems some companies do not want to go digital but they are in the minority. We will ensure that any company that is operating in this market must go digital otherwise, they should look at other sectors to play in.”

“We will not allow such companies to operate in the insurance sector anymore because we must adopt technology to enable optimal growth.”

Thomas in his address to participants at the forum noted that since the advent of COVID19 pandemic, the way and manner in which businesses are conducted have significantly changed, with the major focus now on use of technology to ease activities.

“The Commission have also been working to boost access to insurance through effective deployment of technology, as the Commission’s portal has been launched and effectively deployed.”

He said innovation would be the key to sustenance of the industry and make insurance services seamless by leveraging technology, which drives applications like Insurtech, FinTech, blockchain, data analytics, and IoTs, among others.

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“We must all work together to explore all possible means to take insurance to a new level that will enhance our contribution to the nation’s economy.”

Also at the close door meeting, Thomas informed the CEO’s about the adoption and implementation of Risk Based Supervision.

“The adoption and implementation of RBS has achieved appreciable level in the market. The support from operators has been encouraging and commendable. The next level is now the Risk Based Capital, RBC. The Commission is working with the FSD Africa on this and very soon, the framework will be unveiled.”

On the market 10-year development strategic plan, he said it has become necessary not just for now but for the future.

“It is a document that successive leaders of every arm of the sector could leverage and ride on, urging the NIA and NCRIB to expedite action on the Constitution of the Committee to work on this and will expect a formal report at the next Insurers Committee.

On claims payment, Thomas said the industry need a high level of integrity in this market by paying serious attention to the issue of claims payment. We are not unmindful of the fact that there have been some considerable improvement in the payment of claims by operators in the last few years, but you really need to do a lot more in this area.

“You cannot fail to settle a claim you have already accepted and issued a discharge voucher; you certainly will have no excuse for such behaviour. The Commission frowns at it and will continue to take appropriate steps in line with extant laws in ensuring that this sort of behaviour is curbed in the market.”

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