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Business News of Tuesday, 5 November 2019

Source: www.dailygraphic.com

Comprehensive agricultural insurance policy in the offing

A comprehensive agricultural insurance policy that seeks to provide insurance cover for smallholder farmers in the country is in the offing.

The policy, which is being championed by the National Insurance Commission (NIC), with support from the Alliance for Green Revolution Africa (AGRA), will cushion farmers against risks and uncertainties associated with farming in the country.

Speaking in an interview with the Daily Graphic on the sidelines of a two-day workshop to deliberate on the draft agricultural insurance policy, the Commissioner of Insurance, Justice Yaw Ofori, said despite agriculture being a good business, it carried its own risks.

“Although we have some kind of agric insurance on our market that is being sold by the Ghana Agricultural Insurance Pool, we don’t have a national policy so we have people who need insurance but they can’t afford it.”

“We are looking at coming up with a policy to present to the government and if it is accepted, then it’s going to be a national policy whereby there will be some kind of mechanism to intervene when people run into losses as a result of bad weather and other issues,” he stated.

He said the NIC was optimistic that the draft would not only increase insurance penetration and coverage but also create jobs for the youth.

The legislative reform is for the development of the Ghana Agricultural Insurance Policy and amendment of Act 724 for the provision of agricultural insurance in the country.

Increase productivity

The Director of Financial Services at the Ministry of Finance, Mr Sampson Akligoh, said the policy would increase productivity, competitiveness, financial inclusion and make the country self-sufficient.

He said a well-functioning agricultural insurance landscape had the potential to transform the sector.

“As the government develops policies to promote agricultural insurance in the country, we believe it will increase productivity, competitiveness and financial inclusion in the course of alleviating rural poverty, stabilising farmer’s income and establishing food sufficiency,” he noted.

He said the safety net of agricultural insurance would be an effective instrument to drive those goals.

Through an effective agricultural insurance policy, he said the government would be able to partner private players to develop the framework for product development and risk management.

“The policy will also help to streamline the relief efforts and reduce the direct and indirect costs on the national economy,” he said.