Lagos-based intergovernmental reinsurer Africa Re has Â Â Â been upgraded to single A minus from treble B plus by Standard & Poorâ€™s. The reinsurer said that the improved rating would help the company in its quest for expansion.
Chief Executive Officer, Bakary Kamara said that the S&P decision â€œshow we are secure enough to write the business of any company, be it national or internationalâ€. Africa Re, formed in 1976 by the African Development Bank, currently has an 8% share of the continentâ€™s reinsurance market. It hopes to increase its revenue from the oil and gas business.
In Nigeria the oil and gas companies are required by law to use local insurers to cover at least 40% of their risks. Meanwhile, Africa Re also announced plans to start an Islamic insurance subsidiary, Africa Re Takaful.
Kamara said that the Islamic reinsurer could be based in Qatar or the UAE, although an African base had not been ruled out. The focus of Africa Re Takaful would be African countries with a strong Muslim presence such as Libya, Sudan and Tunisia, but it could also seek to write business in the Middle East, Kamara revealed.