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Life business, oil and gas are new growth areas for insurance

Life business, oil and gas risks are new growth areas that require investment and expansion to achieve ongoing transformation in the nation’s insurance industry and enhance the sector’s contribution to GDP.

The burgeoning pension fund assets now in excess of N12 trillion is expected to empty part of itself into the life insurance portfolio through annuity, and so presents a new growth area for the industry, Sunday Thomas, commissioner for Insurance has said.

Thomas speaking during a Seminar for Insurance Journalist organized by the National Insurance Commission (NAICOM) said to expand the capacity of life insurers, the commission recently licensed some life companies, exactly 10 years after a new licensed was issued in Nigeria.

He disclosed that a committee has been set up with a mandate to ensure that the National Content Act on oil and gas is fully implemented, stating that this will ensure that risks emanating from that sector across the country are placed with local insurers.

Meanwhile, NAICOM has unveiled its 2021-2023 strategic plans for efficient service delivery, protection of policy holders and confidence in the industry.

Usman Jankara, head, Corporate Strategy and Special Duties Department at NAICOM made the disclosure while delivering a lecture at the seminar with the theme: ‘NAICOM Corporate Strategic Plan 2021 to 2023: Goals, Objectives and Key Deliverables.’

Jankara explained that the strategic plan was hinged on five goals including entrenching effective and efficient service delivery, ensuring safe, sound and stable insurance sector.

Other goals are to adequately protect policyholders and public interest, improve trust and confidence in the insurance sector, encourage innovation and promote insurance market development.

According to him, the goals will consolidate the 2016 -2020 strategic plan with new milestones required to enable the commission accomplish its mission.

Jankara noted that some of the Commission’s 2016 to 2020 strategic plans were not achieved due to the prevailing COVID-19 pandemic, among other factors .

“Our strategic plan has simplified what we will focus on and we are now more convinced that we will do much better this year. “We want to have a stable insurance industry to compete globally and contribute to the country’s economy,’’ he said.

Jankara said the plan would also ensure that policyholders’ complaints were handled better and promptly.

Abiodun Aribike, head, Information Technology Department of NAICOM, said in line with the commitment of NAICOM of using information technology to drive the supervision, regulation and governance of insurance business in Nigeria, it has developed the NAICOM Portal to provide a direct interface with the industry to ensure greater accountability and transparency.

Aribike states that the NAICOM Portal he noted is a digital platform that is designed to drive the core business processes of the Nigeria Insurance Industry with the attendance benefits of Service efficiency with quick turnaround time, eradication of fake insurance policies, improve public trust and confidence in Insurance

“NAICOM since the resumption of duty of the Commissioner for Insurance has been leveraging on technology and data for the transformation of its processes, drive its regulatory and supervisory functions, increase operational efficiency and improve its corporate outcomes.
NAICOM he stated is undergoing transformation from the inside out and the target is to ultimately achieve an end to end automation of all its processes.

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