*Economic council works on implementation
*African Re on board to create disaster policy
In a groundbreaking move to minimise the financial toll of natural disasters on individuals, businesses, and the government, the National Economic Council (NEC), chaired by Vice President Kashim Shettima, has proposed the implementation of a national insurance policy to protect against the effects of such disasters.
The initiative, one of the council’s resolutions from its most recent meeting, follows the devastating floods that struck Nigeria, causing significant loss of life and property. In the aftermath of these floods, the NEC recognised the need to mitigate the financial impact of such disasters in the future.
Atiku Bagudu, the minister of Budget and Economic Planning,disclosed that the NEC is considering working with the African Reinsurance Corporation (Africa Re), a pan-African reinsurance company, to create a national insurance policy that would protect Nigeria from the financial impact of unforeseen natural disasters, such as earthquakes and floods.
According to him, the company made two presentations on natural catastrophe insurance that can be utilised to protect natural disasters.
”And this is particularly so as observed by the vice president that Morocco recently had a catastrophic and devastating earthquake. But yet Africa Reinsurance, leading other insurance, provided over $270 million in support to those who were affected because they were insured,’’ the minister explained.
The minister expressed confidence that the proposed policy would also benefit small-scale holders, pastoralists, and Nigerian farmers.
“Equally, there was a presentation on crop insurance which can help our teaming farmers, pastoralists and other small scale holders to obtain insurance so that it will protect them against disasters, catastrophes, or challenges that can be faced from time to time in agricultural production,’’ he said.
In line with this, the council directed the coordinating minister of the Economy and Finance and the minister of Budget and Economic Planning to develop a roadmap for the adoption of a national catastrophe insurance scheme and an insurance program for small-scale farmers and other agricultural stakeholders.