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Business News of Thursday, 29 October 2015

Source: GNA

NIC to enforce Risk-Based Solvency Framework

Lydia Lariba Bawa, Commissioner of NIC Lydia Lariba Bawa, Commissioner of NIC

Ms Lydia Lariba Bawa, the Commissioner of Insurance, on Wednesday, announced that the National Insurance Commission (NIC) would be enforcing a Risk-Based Solvency Framework effective January 2016, to ensure consumer protection.

According to her the action is to ensure that insurance companies keep adequate capital and make technical provisions to meet their liabilities, and also improve their service delivery.

Ms Bawa, made the announcement at opening of the third National Life Insurance conference which was organised by the Ghana Insurers Association (GIA) in Accra, to thrust forward the life insurance agenda on the national platform.

She said NIC takes seriously the issue of consumer protection and has recently issued and published Claims Payment Guidelines to help claimants know what to expect when it comes to making claims.

She said the NIC is implementing a number of reforms to improve the capacity and efficiency of particularly the life Insurance industry to play its expected role in the economy.

According to her, the NIC also operates a Complaints and settlement Bureau to afford the insuring public effective avenues of redress for their complaints, and the Commission intends to scale-up its public education in order to ensure that buyers of insurance products have reasonable understanding of the products they buy and also know what to do or where to go if they encounter problems.

Ms Bawa said the NIC would strive to do more in this direction, to maintain trust, security and stability in the industry, and further increase insurance penetration which currently is very low and stands at less than two per cent.

The conference which was on the theme: “Group Life Insurance: A relevant tool for income security for the family, Industrial Harmony and socio-economic development of Ghana,” highlights Group life insurance as a solution to Ghana’s economic mishaps, by ensuring sustainable income for employees in times of trouble.

Ms Bawa described insurance as the most effective tool to absorb risk for individuals, groups and nations as a whole, whilst at the same time it serves as a foundation for economic stability and socio-economic growth.

The Ghanaian insurance market is growing with huge potentials for expansion and thus an urgent need for policy makers to perceive insurance as part of the solutions to stabilise Ghana’s economic challenges.

She said Group life insurance could therefore be seen as a panacea to overcome the nation’s economic challenges and in so doing advocating for policy makers to recognise group life into regulatory action.

Mr Edward Forkuo Kyei, Second Vice President of the Ghana Insurers Association and Chairman of the Life Insurance Council, said the Ghanaian insurance market is a growing one with huge potentials for expansion and thus an urgent need for policy makers to perceive insurance as part of the solutions to stabilise Ghana’s economic challenges.

He said if policy makers want to protect the country’s financial systems, economic stability and growth, then group life is where they should focus attention on, as it offers the platforms with aggregated numbers and bulk premiums to ensure deeper penetration and density of life insurance in Ghana.