Kenya micro-insurance takeup 'slow'

Jul 30, 2010

Changes to insurance regulation in Kenya are harming the growth of the micro-insurance sector in the country, according to industry figures.

Latest data from the Association of Kenya Insurers show penetration of micro-insurance among the public is low, with takeup of 1.76 per cent and 0.87 per cent for non-life and life insurance respectively, Business Daily reports. And industry specialists have cited the recent change - which means insurers have to separate life insurance from other products - as a reason for the slow growth.

"Micro-insurance is a low-premium high-volume business and it's effective through bundling strategy which involves packaging life and general insurance to increase uptake," explained Nelson Kuria of the Co-operative Insurance Company of Kenya. He noted the changes mean it is now difficult for insurance companies to offer different types of cover in one package - an option that especially attracts low-income earners.

According to research by the International Labour Organization's Micro-insurance Innovation Facility, the market for micro-insurance products in Africa is currently valued at $25 billion (€19.2 billion).