Digital innovations boosting insurance growth, sh2trillion targeted

Ibrahim Kaddunabbi Lubega

Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT |  The insurance industry estimates that Ugandans will pay up to sh2 trillion in total premiums for different products next year, as the population becomes more aware of the importance of insurance.

This is partly attributed to the innovative products that have become more appealing to Ugandans, especially in life insurance, as well as the use of digital technology.

Protazio Sande, the Director for Research and Market Development at the Insurance Regulatory Authority (IRA) said innovation especially over the last three years has achieved its goal of reaching more people with different products and is changing the attitude of the public towards insurance.

He was speaking at the review of the performance of the 2023 insurance innovation awards and the launch of the 4th episode.

The awards were launched in 2020, coinciding with the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic that boosted digital transformation. Then, insurance penetration was just over 0.7 per cent and has since moved to about 0.88 per cent, according to available industry figures.

The premium has also grown from about 974 billion in 2019 to 1.6 trillion Shillings expected for this year, partly due to enhanced payment of claims and the payment of bonuses on life products.

Sande says since the awards started, the resultant innovations have made it easier for the public to deal with the insurance industry, hence the fast growth.

Ibrahim Kaddunabbi Lubega, the Executive Director of IRA said he was happy with the turnaround time for claims processing, with some claims taking less than 24 hours from the time of filing to payment.

And this, Kaddunabbi says, will continue to improve as better technological innovation is making it easier to verify the claims and all operations generally. He says that therefore, the innovation awards are also beneficial to the insurance customers.

At 0.88, Uganda has one of the lowest insurance penetration levels, measured by the volume of revenues compared to the country’s GDP, with Kenya at more than 2 percent and South Africa at 17 percent. Most Ugandans do not see insurance as a necessity in life and only go for it where it is absolutely necessary or compulsory.

Paul Muhame, the Executive Director, of the Insurance Brokers Association of Uganda, says it is time for the industry to do things differently in line with the changing ways of lives and times generally.

Saul Sseremba, the CEO of Insurance Training College said over the three years, the innovation awards have led to many innovations in the industry.

Jonan Kisakye, the executive director of the Uganda Insurers Association called on the government to take an interest in supporting innovation in insurance because a larger industry will contribute more to the economy, especially through taxes.

The awards include underwriters, brokers, bancassurance agents, individual agents, individuals, loss assessors and media innovation awards, taking place in March next year under the theme InsureVate – Igniting Excellence in the Insurance Sector.



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