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Why insurance growth is hindered in Nigeria – Expert

An Insurance expert, Dr Sam Onyeka, said lack of awareness and confidence among insurance operators hindered growth of insurance business in the country.
Onyeka told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Tuesday in Abuja that there was urgent need for insurance practitioners to brace up to the challenges in the industry, especially education.
He disclosed that a firm had been set up in the sector to engage in addressing the lapses of awareness of issues and trends in the industry and confidence of operators.
According to him, stakeholders in the industry came together in a partnership to establish a firm that will help to create more awareness to the public on the importance of insurance.
“We are interested in creating awareness in the industry, because we believe strongly that part of the reason insurance is not performing is because majority of the people are not aware.
“They are not aware of the concept the way they should and those who are aware about it lack confidence on the operators.
“So, we believe that there is need to create a complimentary platform that will encourage and ensure mass patronage for insurance products and also ensure that claims are settled when they occur.
Onyeka said that the firm, ISG Consulting, would also partner Transparent Protection Limited (TPL) by Guarantee, a Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO), to ensure the success of its objectives.
He said that the NGO had been involved in awareness creation in the insurance industry since its inception about three years ago.
“ We will soon roll out plans as regards what we intend to do and how we are going to drive it,’’ he said.
He pointed out that there was concern about the skill gap in the industry, adding that it was one of challenges the firm intended to tackle.
Onyeka said, “we feel that the very few people who truly understand insurance practices in the country are retiring and dying and they are not being replaced as fast as it should.
“And, this creates a kind of gap in the sector, so we also want to use the platform of the ISG to create skills for the insurance industry especially as regards risk management.’’
He explained that Nigeria had one of the most liberal investment laws, which was affecting insurance business.
According to him, these laws have made it possible for a number of companies from abroad to come into the country to buy equity shares in our insurance companies.
”These investors need people to trust, they need people to direct them, they need people to explain investment laws as it relates to Nigeria, to them.
”So, we intend to use ISG consulting for the purposes of rendering insurance and risk management services to all,’’ Onyeka said.

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