While ongoing policies geared towards improving the performance of the insurance sector in Nigeria is underway, Fatai Adegbenro, executive secretary and CEO of the Nigerian Council of Registered Insurance Brokers (NCRIB) has hinted the need for a solid synergy between the underwriters and brokers.
This, he said, will facilitate speedy progress in meeting the diverse insurance policy needs of the citizenry and in turn boost growth in the industry.
Speaking exclusively to business a.m in Lagos on Thursday, Adegbenro who agreed that the insurance industry is currently underperforming, said a solid synergy between the underwriters and brokers will foster efficient solutions and promote a rapid growth trajectory through adequate brainstorming.
“There is no way we can grow this industry if the two arms are not in agreement. We have to collaborate,” he said.
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Adding that, the brokers don’t carry risk, the insurance firms do. But, the brokers are professional intermediaries who can properly advise their clients.
“When a prospective insurance user approaches a broker with issues, tailor made policies can be created by the broker through reliable identification of such consumer’s exposure,” Adegbenro said.
Addressing the issue of lack of claims payment which deters insurance purchase, Adegbenro stressed that, people who complain of not getting their claims are people who do not have adequate or genuine insurance. He revealed that claims on insurance policies made through brokers never get turned down.
“If you want to enjoy the benefits of insurance make use of registered insurance brokers, that way, they can advise you on your insurance needs, guide you and get better terms for you,” he advised.
He said it costs nothing to engage brokers as the cost of using brokers are already embedded in premiums of all insurance covers.
Arguing against the notion that poverty deters the demand for insurance, the NCRIB chief explained that poverty rate is relative and that a vast majority of low/mid-income earners can afford insurance in Nigeria. Rather, a vast knowledge gap and misplaced priorities are the challenges preventing the rapid growth of the industry, he said.
He however noted that the insurance industry has identified this gap and it is working seriously on closing the gap, through several awareness campaigns.
EFINA Nigeria in a recent survey confirmed that lack of awareness remains a huge constraint affecting the uptake of insurance as 77.2 percent of Nigerians are not aware of insurance.
The organisation’s survey noted that while uptake is currently low, 31.2 million adults will be interested in using microinsurance, thus presenting a significant opportunity for brokers, underwriters and other insurance operators to further drive growth.