GIA initiates moves to enhance self-regulation

The Ghana Insurers Association (GIA) has begun rolling out some measures to make insurance more attractive.

The insurance sector is currently battling with low penetration due to challenges such as delay in processing and receiving claims.

The level of insurance penetration currently stands at two per cent.

To reverse the trend, the Association has re-launched an electronic bureau to receive complaints from clients to enhance its work.

Speaking to Starr FM after re-launching the electronic bureau at a recent event, President of the Ghana Insurers Association, Aretha Duku, observed that any industry that was expected to be maturing must be able to self-regulate.

“This is the beginning of self-regulation,” she asserted in reference to the re-launched electronic bureau.

The bureau, according to her, will unburden the Commissioner of the National Insurance Commission (NIC) in dealing with challenges facing the industry’s growth.

“We are not saying that you can’t go to the commission (NIC) if you so desired. But what we are saying is that come to the industry association first, as your first point of call and if we fail then you can go,” she explained.

Meanwhile, the NIC is considering to increase the minimum capital requirement in the sector, per media reports. The new capital requirement will be pegged at around GH¢50million.

Currently, insurance companies are required to have GH¢15 million before they can do business in the country.

Analysts fear the development could lead to the folding up or mergers in the sector.

But speaking to Starr Business, the Commissioner of Insurance Justice Yaw Ofori, has said any increment would be in the interest of local insurance firms.

“We are looking at so many things; we don’t want to close down local insurance companies and we want to be very careful we don’t open it up to only foreign insurers else the local insurers cannot compete,” he stated.

The commission, he said, was working assiduously to ensure local insurers can build capacity “so that they can absorb much insurance instead of sending them outside the country.”

“So, we are trying to strike a balance…but whatever we do we want to have empirical basis for any minimum capital adjustment. We just don’t want to come out and say this is the new minimum capital requirement. There should be some empirical reasoning,” he stated.

 

Story: Kofi OWUSU TAWIAH

Writer’s Email: kofi.tawiah@todaygh.com

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