An insurance trading portal, insurancemarket.ng developed to deepen insurance penetration in the country has been launched by the Minister of Communications, Barrister Adebayo Shittu in Lagos.
The an online market, the latest in the nation’s fast growing e-commerce sector was unveiled by the Minister before key stakeholders in the insurance and the ICT industry at an event, tagged: E-Insurance Conference, 2017 and with the theme: “Driving Insurance Penetration With ICT”.
According to Shittu, Information and Communication Technology (ICT) remains the panacea for harnessing and deepening insurance penetration in Nigeria, saying that the official launch of insurancemarket.ng by Pinet Informatics Limited will provide support for the sector, just like ICT has done for the financial institutions.
He said that the Insurance sector despite being a major driver of business growth that provides a critical support system to the financial market has not fared well given the current size of the Nigerian economy and population.
“Information available to me indicates that there are less than 1.5 million insurance policyholders, representing a paltry 0.9% of a population of well over 170 million citizens. Similarly, the gross premium of the sector is said to be less than 500 billion naira, implying that the sector contributes less than 1% to national GDP”, he said.
He said, InsuranceMarket will be expand market activities in the insurance sector explaining that it will improved operational efficiency(including smooth communication between clients and company officials), office automation and optimisation, digital marketing and online marketplace for assessment and purchase of insurance packages.
Shittu said, in other climes, e-insurance has already been fully adopted and various insurance products can be obtained through online insurance portals, which are programmed to tailor unique insurance packages to the distinctive individual requirements of prospective customers.
Some aspects of insurance that have been adapted to e-Insurance, he added, include auto and car insurance, health insurance, home insurance and life insurance.
The minister who was delighted with the organisers of the conference promised that government will continue to introduce and drive policies that will propel Nigeria to attain the status of a knowledge-based nation.
Managing Director, Mutual Benefits Assurance, Mr. Segun Omosehin described the idea of using ICT to drive insurance penetration as a worth initiative saying that patronage of insurance by Nigerians has been very low.
He said that the business of underwriting in the insurance market needs ICT to deepen insurance penetration in the country adding that the launch of insurnacemarket.ng will promote the insurance industry in Nigeria.
Also speaking at the event, Managing Director, Brightways Insurance Brokers, Mrs. Nike Braimoh said that the use of ICT to grow the industry in the country was long over-due because of the impact of mobile telephone in the growth of other sectors in the economy.
She said that it now possible through insurancemarket.ng for anyone to buy insurance product from any part of the country noting that this new method will benefit the brokers a lot.
Earlier in his welcome address, Managing Director of Pinet Informatics, Engineer Lanre Ajayi, and the convener of the conference said that the Conference was to drive home need for technology and insurance sectors collaboration to drive penetration.
Ajayi said that they saw the gap and came up with the initiative so that successes recorded in the telecommunications sector can be replicated in Insurance industry.
This he said requires “Policy consistency- this has worked in stabilizing telecommunications industry.