By ZAKA KHALIQ, Lagos
Despite the low insurance adoption, penetration and acceptance in the country, Nigeria’s insurance industry is ranked fifth in Africa. The top five insurance markets on the continent are said to have overall market share of 85 percent of premiums across Africa.
General-Secretary of the African Insurance Organization (AIO), Ms Prisca Soares, speaking at a press conference after the launching of the second Africa Insurance Barometer at the just concluded 44th AIO Conference and General Assembly in Kampala, Uganda, said insurance market in the continent was still dominated by South Africa.
The other major markets, she mentioned, include Morocco, Egypt, Kenya and Nigeria while the top five markets account for 85 percent of the total premiums. Kenya grew fastest in 2015 achieving a compound annual growth rate of slightly more than 10 percent from 2011 – 2015, Soares said.
According to her, “With a volume of $46 billion, representing 72 percent of the total insurance premiums in the continent, South Africa is still by far Africa’s largest insurance market. Of the five major markets, South Africa tops the list followed by Kenya, Morocco and Egypt while Nigeria ranked fifth on the list.”
The Africa Insurance Barometer, she pointed out, provides a comprehensive overview of the current state and future prospects of the US$ 64 billion African insurance market, stressing that lack of insurance awareness and trust were the main factors contributing to the lacklustre performance in most of the markets.
“Only South Africa is on par at 1.9 per cent and 2.0 per cent. Kenya and Morocco have higher non-life insurance penetration levels than could be expected, based on their economic development. Insurance market development in both countries is facilitated by advanced and well-respected regulatory and supervisory authorities,” she noted. She expressed optimism that Africa’s insurance penetration, which currently stands at 2.9 per cent or less than half of the global average, will translate into accelerated premium growth –provided global demand and commodity prices continue to bounce back in 2017 and 2018.