Most Zimbabweans not insured

HARARE - Zimbabwean insurance companies have been urged to come up with new products aimed at capturing at least 9,1 million people who are not insured.

Finance ministry director Judith Rusike said insurance sector firms must play a part in promoting financial inclusion.

“The FinScope Consumer Survey carried out in Zimbabwe in 2014 indicated that only 30 percent of the Zimbabwean population is insured.

The results show that there is huge potential for growth of the insurance business in Zimbabwe given that 70 percent is not insured,” she said.                                      

In that regard, Rusike urged insurance service providers to change their business models by coming up with products that meet the needs of the people, as well as to harness the power of technology in reaching out to unserved markets.

“A number of individuals and business owners feel insurance is an expense they cannot afford, or is a luxury for more established businesses. Although, it is true business insurance can be expensive, it is an expense every individual and business, regardless of the industry, size or length of time in existence, needs to have,” she added.

The Insurance Council of Zimbabwe (ICZ) chairman, Brilliant Shumba, noted that despite the critical role played by insurance in the country, the industry remains widely misunderstood and viewed with scepticism by some sectors of the populace.

“This attitude we gather is usually driven by negative experiences especially during the claims process, a lack of appreciation of insurance and sometimes mis-selling by those that markets our products,” he added.

The ICZ boss said the certainty and peace of mind that insurance provides is the necessary catalyst that spurs entrepreneurs, inventors and developers to push the boundaries of what is possible.

“It is not a coincidence that the most economically prosperous nations of the world are characterised by high levels of insurance penetration,” he said.

Shumba said insurance, which is a vital cog in the wheels of economic development, also plays a critical role in the mobilisation of savings for national development.

The insurance premiums that are collectively paid into the insurance fund are invested into various national development initiatives that aid social and economic growth.

Comments (1)

How can unemployed folks sustain a regular $40-$50 insurance premium before feeding the kids. It's a simple factor which you have not addressed. The few formal sector employees are the ones holding up the insurance industry together with corporate clients. Until people are back in formal, secure jobs, insurance will be at the back of the queue for priorities.

martingee - 8 July 2016

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