By Â Patience Saghana
Of the N200buillion generated by the nationâ€™sÂ insurance companies in 2009, Motor, Life and General Accident businesses led with premium incomes of N41.66billion, respectively just as oil and gas which became visible four years ago as a result of a level playing field, raked in N25.53billion in 2009 alone. In the past, oil and gas insurance business used to be lumped up with marine and aviation insurance until 2006.
Besides, records have shown that the top three classes of business have in the last ten years posted the highestÂ premium income. Other classes of insurance business posted premium income of N18.73billionÂ for marine/aviation; N17.3billion for Fire; N13.8billion for miscellaneous and N13.4bilion for Workmenâ€™s Compensation in the year under review.
However, the total premium income announced by the Nigerian insurers Association rose by 33.5 per cent from N150billion in 2008 to N200billion in 2009.
Mr. Wole Oshin, the immediate past Chairman of the NIA at the associationâ€™s 39th Annual General Meeting in Lagos recently commended the effort of the entire insurance industry at increasing insurance penetration and premium income.
According to him,Â â€The insurance industry has come of age, having blossomed from a small industry to a mega one. This performance is expected to be surpassed in 2010 as companies continue to evolve dynamic strategies to expand the frontiers of their businesses.â€
Oshin said Further that the increasingly international nature of insurance business has reinforced the need for greater levels of cooperation between regulators who are undertaking broadly convergent initiatives to secure efficient, effective supervision as well as the mitigation of systemic risk. However, perhaps more significant, is the group risk within multi-platform international insurers, especially as domestic markets open up and global groups extend their operations into them.
Mr Olusola Olatayo Ladipo-Ajayi, the new chairman of the NIA whilsts addressing the associationâ€™s governing council, NIA members and the entire insurance industry assured that his tenure would engender quality leadership that would harness the human and financial resources of the industry to achieve the goal of sustaining the sector.
Ladipo-Ajayi stated that the NIA would continue to work together with bodies within and outside of the insurance industry in the best interest of the sector to promote alliance, cooperation and unity.
The new NIA helmsman said the resolution passed by the association to help the Chartered Insurance Institute of Nigeria in the area of human capital development would be followed up to realisation.
Ladipo-Ajayi said, â€œI must also assure the National Insurance Commission that we will work closely with them in all areas, especially in ensuring compliance with their regulations and their efforts to deepen the market as evident in the launching of the market development and restructuring initiative.â€
Regulatory reform of the commission and its evolution is increasingly being driven by simultaneous interactions among regulators, insurers and trade bodies at both a national and international level.
And as the countryâ€™s market increased in sophistication, so has the insurance regulation has evolved. whilst the industry witness a general move away from traditional factor-based approaches to solvency and towards more comprehensive self regulation as the market agreement though the agreement has not in its entity been abide with.
Â The insurance regulator change and improvement haveÂ is in many respects largely consistent with market initiatives which would inevitably reinforce improved standards in the market thus inspiring competition through transparency and the potential use of regulator-approved internal models in the determination of solvency capital.