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Digitise agric insurance, experts advise

Published by The Nation on Tue, 04 May 2021

By Omobola Tolu-KusimoAllianz experts with key partners and Africa Re have proferred solutions to the protection problem in Africa.Allianz held a second webinar after acquisition in East Africa, to introduce Allianz as a global leader in insurance markets.The event entitled,The digitisation of agriculture Insurance through parametric solutions, Allianz Africa brought together agriculture and insurance experts such as Reto Schneider, Regional Head of Agriculture at Allianz Re, Lovemore Forichi, Senior Underwriter of Agriculture at Allianz Re, Gregoire Tombez, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of WARM Consulting Group Limited and co-founder of Green Triangle, Erastus Ndege Ochieng, Asset Manager, Agriculture Underwriting at Africa Re, Omondi Kasidhi, Head, Sustainable Agriculture Sourcing of Diageo PLC and Delphine Traore, Chief Operating Officer (COO) of Allianz Africa, to discuss the topic.According to the experts, parametrics insurance product is an innovative, efficient and fully digital solution to expedite payments to customers.Traor said there was the need to invest in agriculture, given its importance as a food source, especially in view of the increase in population, to explain the interest of Allianz Africa for sustainability in the agricultural sector.She said: Indeed, agriculture production makes up a substantial portion of the continents GDP in Africa, yet only a small portion of the producers are insured.Raising awareness of the vital role that agriculture insurance plays in sustaining agricultural production is a key step to increasing insurancepenetration in the sector.Delphine added: Allianz Africa aims to contribute towards closing the protection gap and position itself as a leading agriculture (re)insurance provider on the continent.In addition, climate risks increase the need for investments to make agriculture more resilient, following the panels experts. They agreed that the development and commercialisation of agriculture requires financial services that can support. To this end, agricultural insurance is strategically important for eradicating extreme poverty, boosting prosperity and protecting livelihoods.Last year, Reto Schneider stated that the industry recorded a cumulative premium of $300million from agricultural insurance.The Southern and Eastern regions of Africa contributed more than 80 per cent of the recorded premium. Eastern Africa recently recorded an improvement in its trajectory.The agricultural sector could reach the potential of $1billion within 10 years, provided that penetration can be substantially increased.During the webinar, parametrics solutions were presented as the direction for the future. They bring many advantages such as high accuracy with state-of-the art satellite information, hybrid products to address additional perils, increased efficiency through fully paperless processes, fast and automated payouts possible, high level of traceability, combination with loans and integration of the value chain.CEO of WARM Consulting Group Limited and co-founder of GreenTriangle Gregoire Tombez, added: Technology is closing the gap between indemnity and parametric crop insurance and allows to get the best of both worlds in a single product.In Africa, Allianz is in 12 countries, including Nigeria and clients in 49 markets. Its 1,300 employees achieved regional revenue of 663 million euros in 2019.Allianz also provides micro-insurance for 1.7million low-income families and individuals in Africa.
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