Expert calls for development of Nigerian micro-insurance

Nov 23, 2010

Nigerian insurance operators need to explore the option of developing micro-insurance businesses in order to cut poverty in the country

This is the view of Akin Ogunbiyi, Managing Director of Mutual Benefits Assurance, who made the suggestion while speaking to insurance practitioners in Lagos, Leadership reports. He explained creating such companies can enable low-income earners in the nation to minimise their risk exposure, saying Nigeria fits the criteria for a micro-insurance industry, as it has a population of over 150 million people, around 90 per cent of whom match the profile of those requiring such services.

Financial products could be provided that offer cover for crops, livestock, illness, injury, death and theft, Mr Ogunbiyi stated, but added making the premium affordable is critical. "In developing countries, insurance is not mandatory as the poor have other important priorities to spend their little disposable income on," he observed.

Nigeria's central bank recently revealed microfinance banks in the country are to get access to a long-term fund of around 200 billion Nigerian naira (€979 million), which will contribute to achieving financial inclusiveness among the population, according to the Daily Trust.