By Habibat Aliu
The National Insurance Commission (NAICOM) has advised operators in the sector to incorporate insurance as an essential part of the financial plans of individuals, entities, and businesses to drive growth in the New Year’s business outlook.
The Commissioner for Insurance, Sunday Thomas, disclosed this at the Chartered Insurance Institute of Nigeria (CIIN) 2023 Business Outlook Conference with the theme “Reshaping the Financial Sector: Emergent Challenges and Opportunities” held in Lagos.
According to him, insurance should take first place in people’s financial plans owing to the crucial role it plays.
Thomas also appealed to operators to make insurance part of the financial services offered to Nigerians.
He noted that insurance, as a risk mitigation tool, prepares everyone for unforeseen circumstances and losses instead of enhancing unexpected borrowings.
Thomas, therefore, called on the underwriting companies to come up with the right products, noting that, “It is the deep understanding of the customers’ businesses that aids insurers to gain insight into the financial status of the customers, thereby helping to market the right product, rather than struggling to sell what had been produced. That is, develop products that could be sold” but do not “try to sell what had been produced.”
The Chairman of the Council of the Institute, Edwin Igbiti, in his address to the industry operators and financial sector experts, said the forum is specifically designed to review the business environment in the country for the immediate past year and strategies on the way forward for the insurance industry in the new year.
Igbiti noted that the programme, among other things, examines the national budget, reviews the thrusts of the fiscal and monetary policies of the government, and estimates how these would influence the insurance industry in particular and the economy in general.
This first session of the review envisages the 2023 national budget, most especially the aspect that relates to the Insurance Industry and how the industry can reposition itself.
The objective is to review business and financial activities, share ideas, and project proponents for profitability, and proffer solutions and recommendations to operational challenges in the country.
“It is a platform to discuss the National Budget as it relates to the financial sector, meet professionals from different professions in the financial world, and share expertise on the issues pertinent to the growth and development of the Nigeria economy,” he said.
Igbiti expressed optimism that the forum will be insightful considering the positive projections of the global industry at the beginning of the year.