NAICOM to boost financial inclusion with NIIDP

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National Insurance Commission (NAICOM) said it has concluded plans to launch the Nigerian Insurance Industry Development Plan (NIIDP) in order to boost financial inclusion.

The commission said it had already concluded work on the NIIDP, with KPMG, a consulting firm monitoring its implementation to ensure each segment of the market kept to date with their assigned responsibilities.

The Commissioner for Insurance and Chief Executive Officer, NAICOM, Mohammed Kari, said this at the National Insurance Conference, in Abuja.

The conference had ‘Insurance Industry and Financial Inclusion’ as its theme.

He said: “The timing of this Conference could not have been more significant especially as we prepare to launch the Nigerian Insurance Industry Development Plan (NIIDP) which has Financial Inclusion as one of its major components. Work on the NIIDP has already been concluded with inputs from KPMG, consulting firms who will also independently monitor its implementation to ensure each segment of the market keep to date with their assigned responsibilities.

“It may interest you to know that the plan has been presented to the Insurers Committee, a body comprising management of NAICOM, CEOs of insurance companies and heads of insurance trade associations and the Chartered Insurance Institute of Nigeria (CIIN) to ensure every player in the industry is on the same page with us. I commend the market committee and KPMG for the good job on the NIIDP.

“How the insurance sector in Nigeria could effectively and efficiently navigate this turn to increase the number of policyholders while reducing the figure of the financially excluded, is part of what the NIIDP contain.

“The strategic initiatives and implementation plans of the NIIDP notwithstanding, we have dedicated this forum to financial inclusion for an opportunity to listen to speakers and discussants with divergent views and opinions so as to improve on what we already have.”

NAICOM also linked high rate of poverty in Nigeria and the rest of the world to financial exclusion.

Kari said the insurance sector plays a vital role in any economy by helping to reduce the poverty line.

He said: “The general consensus seems to be that financial exclusion is one of the main causes of poverty in the world.

“The insurance sector plays a vital role in all of these because it helps to reduce the poverty line, it helps entities and individuals manage their risks and protects them from negative adverse effects of unforeseeable events.

“Commission recognizes financial inclusion as a tool for financial development and inclusive growth agenda and will therefore, continue to support the development of products that will improve the standard of living of the people and increase the role of insurance in the development and growth of the average Nigerian’s standard of living.

He added that Nigeria launched the National Financial Inclusion Strategy (NFIS) in 2012 to reduce the percentage of adults that are excluded from financial services from 46.3 per cent in 2010 to 20 per cent by 2020.

“The strategic goals are driven by a broad range of coordinated interventions, including simplified Know Your Customer (KYC) regulations, Agent banking, Micro insurance and Consumer Protection principles,” he added.

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