AIO president charges reinsurers to find solutions to inherent problems

By Favour Nnabugwu


The President of African Insurance Organisation (AIO)has chaeged reinsurers to examine the  inherent problems facing the African insurance industry and provide lasting solutions.

Smart who is also the Group Managing Director, NEM Insurance Plc, this while giving his address at the 25th African Reinsurers Forum going on in Kigali, Rwanda.

He urged participants to leverage the event and do an objective dissection of the event theme, which is Insurance Integration In The Context Of African Continental Free Trade Area.

According to him, one of the instruments of ensuring a healthy, resilient, and robust economy for Africa no doubts remains the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) agreement, adding that after deep reflection, the AIO Secretariat thought it wise that it incorporate insurance integration into the agreement.

“This is why during this 25th African Reinsurance Forum, discussions will centre around the theme: Insurance Integration In The Context Of African Continental Free Trade Area.

“The African Insurance Organisation is happy to return to the birthplace of the African Continental Free Trade Area, Kigali, to examine not only how the insurance sector can best integrate into the AfCFTA, but to also provide a conducive venue for the cream of the African insurance industry to reflect on the way forward,” he posited.
Smart noted that through the event, the AIO further wishes to highlight the contribution of the African insurance industry to the realisation of the lofty idea, whose benefits to the entire African continent cannot be overemphasized.

He submitted that the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) agreement will create the largest free trade area in the world measured by the number of countries participating, adding that the pact connects 1.3 billion people across 55 countries with a combined gross domestic product (GDP) valued at US$3.4 trillion according to the African Union.

He said AfCFTA has the potential to lift 30 million people out of extreme poverty but achieving its full potential will depend on putting in place significant policy reforms and trade facilitation measures.

He noted that in concrete terms, the AfCFTA emphasizes the reduction of tariffs and non-tariff barriers, and the facilitation of free movement of people and labor, capital, right of residence, right of establishment and investment.

“In September this year, the Africa Insurance Pulse, a research publication of the AIO, carried out an extensive study on the African Continental Free Trade Agreement.

“In the findings, insurance executives interviewed hope that in the long term the successful implementation of AfCFTA will benefit all markets. In the short to medium term, however, they expect that the large markets such as South Africa, Morocco, and Kenya will benefit most. When asked which insurance players will be the «winners», the clear answer with 46 per cent is the African regional insurance/reinsurance players such as Africa Re, CICA Re, Sanlam and Santam.

“According to the executives, they have a better starting position than all other players because they already have a well-established and tested distribution network across several countries, which will be reinforced with the single market approach,” he submitted.

He maintained that insurance and reinsurance players that participated in the survey were optimistic about their future in the context of the AfCFTA. “75 per cent do not believe the single market will become a threat to their business. Many reinsurers and global and regional insurers confirmed that they already operate under the logic of a single market. Many believe that the insurance pie will grow with the single market, facilitating the expansion beyond their current reach of active markets.

Reinsurers that are active primarily in one or a few markets see this as a unique opportunity to diversify their risk portfolio. To get prepared, two-thirds of interview partners stated that they already reflected the impact of AfCFTA into their strategic planning, while the remaining group is waiting to gain more information on the impact of the free trade on them,” he said.

Smart said AIO’s goal for setting up the reinsurance forum was to encourage the exchange of business through bilateral contacts and discussions which fall in line with the organisation’s objective of promoting inter-African cooperation and the development of a healthy insurance and reinsurance industry in Africa.

According to him, since the inception of the Reinsurance Forum, there has been a lot of exchange of business among African industry practitioners, but there is still much room for further deepening of the business exchanges.

“One of Africa’s visionary leaders, His Excellency President Paul Kagame of the Republic of Rwanda once said “In Africa today, we recognise that trade and investment, and not aid, are pillars of development.” The AfCFTA agreement, to me, is that golden opportunity to make this a reality,” he posited.

AIO President implores reinsurers to tackle inherent challenges facing African insurance industry

No going back on January 1, deadline for IFRS 17 – NAICOM

By Favour Nnabugwu


The Commissioner, National Insurance Commission, Mr Sunday Thomas, has said there is not going back on January 1, 2023 deadline for enforcement of full compliance with the International Financial Reporting Standards 17 by the National Insurance Commission, Naicom.

Thomas spoke while delivering his speech at the Insurance Director’s Conference in Lagos.

He said, “I want to urge you also to follow up on the implementation of the International Financial Reporting Standards. IFRS 17 in your companies. The implementation dateline of 1st January, 2023 is right before us.

“Sufficient capacity building engagements have been conducted and sub-working groups inaugurated to facilitate the migration. You are therefore required to ensure that your entities are in full compliance and ready for the dateline.”

On the issue of development of insurance in the country, he urged the directors to work closely with their management as a lot was expected from them at the top level.

He said the commission was working assiduously to open up the market particularly the retail end, and conducting engagements with various agencies and state governments on the need to boost insurance culture across the country.

However, he added that the supply side comprising the insurance companies must also be proactive with follow ups in these places.

Eurobond, SDRs raise Nigeria’s external reserves to $41.4bn

By Favour Nnabugwu


Nigeria witnessed a 35 per cent spike in its foreign reserves as Eurobond and Special Drawing Rights (SDRs) shot it up from $32.9 billion recorded last June to $41.4 billion this month.

According to  Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria(CBN), Mr Godwin Emefiele, who disclosed this at the weekend in his address at the Bankers’ Dinner in Lagos, the accretion was as a result of demand management policy of the apex bank, Eurobond and the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) Special Drawing Rights( SDRs).

SDRs are supplementary foreign exchange reserveassets defined and maintained by the International Monetary Fund (IMF}.

Giving his scorecard before the gathering of the bankers and other dignitaries at the event, Emefiele said: “Prior to the start of the pandemic in 2019, our economy was making steady progress out of the difficulties from the global oil price vagaries of the previous years. Indeed, our Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth rate for 2019 stood at 2.3 per cent, on the back of a relatively strong fourth quarter GDP of 2.55 per cent that year. This growth was accompanied by significant foreign capital inflows due to improved fundamentals of the economy.

“As a result of the drop in foreign exchange supply, arising from low earnings from the sale of crude oil, the Naira depreciated by 7.7 per cent from N380/$ to 410/$ at the I & E window. Supply was also affected by massive outflow of foreign portfolio investments from emerging and frontier Markets, including Nigeria in 2020. A combination of these factors led to a marked drop in our foreign reserves from nearly $36.7billion at the beginning of the crises in March 2020, to a low of $32.9billion in June 2021. It is important to state that the volume of activities at the I&E window fell from nearly $250million – $300 million daily to less than $40 million in the first quarter of 2021.

“As a result of these measures, we witnessed robust economic recovery as GDP growth stood at 4.03 per cent in the 3rd quarter of 2021, following the 5.01 per cent growth recorded in the 2nd Quarter of 2021. The economy has remained on a positive growth path for four consecutive quarters after the recession in the 3rd quarter of 2020. 41 out of the 46 sectors assessed in the 3rd quarter by NBS, recorded positive growth, as growth was driven by significant improvements in the non-oil sector, particularly, agriculture manufacturing, trade, ICT, construction, finance and transportation. We have also witnessed a gradual recovery in manufacturing output growth as the Manufacturing PMI index rose to 47.3 points in October 2021 from 44.9 in January 2021.

“Supported by our demand management policy, in addition to support from the successful issuance of the $4 billion Eurobond and the IMF SDR, our external reserves today stands at over $41.4billion, which is enough to support 9 months of imports. This is not just a morale booster for both foreign direct and portfolio investors willing to invest in the economy, but it provides significant fire power to support our domestic industries that need to import critical machines and equipment for domestic production and exports.”

“As a result of our demand management policy, the naira has remained largely stable around N411/$1 at the I&E window, particularly since the discontinuation of FX allocation to Bureau De Change operators along with the convergence between the CBN and NAFEX rates. Banks are now able to meet the demands of their customers seeking forex for SMEs, school fees, medical and PTAs, which has reduced the need of customers to rely on alternative providers of foreign exchange. Average daily FX turnover at the I&E window is now over $250million, up from $40million in April 2020.

“Our current account deficit has narrowed significantly, from a huge deficit of 4.53 percent of GDP in the 4th quarter of 2020 to negative 0.44 per cent of GDP in the 2nd quarter of 2021.”

NIMET forecast high temperature for Ogun, most northern States

By Favour Nnabugwu


The Nigerian Meteorological Agency ,NiMET, yesterday released a forecast of a high temperature of over 35°C in Ogun State and most Northern states of Nigeria.

The forecast released by Prof. Mansur Matazu, the Director-General, NiMET, said that the affected States would experience some high intensity for the next two days and this will commence from Tuesday till Wednesday in most regions of the north.

The forecast also said that the ” northern region would experience temperatures greater than 35°C, but less than 40°C for the two days.”

Matazu listed the affected states to include ” North-East; Borno, Yobe, Bauchi, Gombe, the Eastern part of Jigawa, Northern Adamawa and Northern Taraba,” stressing that the areas would have temperatures in the excess of 35°C.

Also, “Sokoto, the western part of Zamfara and the Eastern half of Kebbi, in the North East are expected to experience temperatures in the excess of 35°C during the forecast period”.

He further said : “In the central part of the country, Niger, Northern part of Kwara, west of Federal Capital Territory (FCT), southern Plateau, North-East of Kogi, and North-west of Benue are all expected to experience high temperatures.”

“High-temperature greater than 40°C is expected over parts of Niger state. However, other parts of Niger, FCT, northern Kwara, Kogi, Benue, Nasarawa, and eastern Plateau in the central states are expected to experience temperatures above 35°C.”

“Sokoto, Kebbi, and Zamfara in the northwest as well as northern Jigawa, southern Yobe, Borno, Gombe, eastern Bauchi, northern Adamawa, and northern Taraba in the northeast is expected to record temperatures greater than 35°C. Ogun State in the South West of Nigeria could experience 35°C,” he added.

New Omicron COVID variant detected in 2 travellers from Nigeria in Canada

By admin



Canada’s Ministry of Health has confirmed two cases of the Omicron COVID-19 variant in two individuals who recently travelled from Nigeria to the country.

A statement by Ontario Ministry of Health said the two travellers had already been isolated.

“Today, the province of Ontario has confirmed two cases of the Omicron variant of COVID-19 in Ottawa, both of which were reported in individuals with recent travel from Nigeria”, the ministry said.

“Ottawa Public Health is conducting case and contact management and the patients are in isolation.

“In addition to the measures recently announced, we continue to urge the federal government to take the necessary steps to mandate point-of-arrival testing for all travellers irrespective of where they’re coming from to further protect against the spread of this new variant,” it said.

Also, Health Minister Jean-Yves Duclos also confirmed Canada’s first two cases in a statement on Sunday evening, saying he is working with the province’s public health officials to contact trace the cases.

“As the monitoring and testing continues with provinces and territories, it is expected that other cases of this variant will be found in Canada.”

Meanwhile, the World Health Organisation (WHO) has labelled the Omicron variant as a variant of concern.

Persecondnews recalls that it was first reported by South African scientists with over 100 cases already logged.

To contain its spread, the EU, U.S., UK, Canada, Australia, UAE have announced travel ban on Southern African countries

FAAN alerts relevant agencies on Covid-19 new variant, omicron

By Favour Nnabugwu
Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria, FAAN , said all relevant agencies in charge of health checks at the nation’s airports have  been placed on high alert to prevent the importation of the new covid-19 new variant, Omicron, into the country.
This just as the civil aviation regulator, Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority, NCAA, said it is waiting to enforce any directive from the Presidential Steering Committee on Covid-19 on measures to prevent the spread of the new variant into the country.
The General Manager, Corporate Affairs, FAAN, Mrs Herrietta Yakubu stated that the agencies and Port Health officials have been given the clear order to ensure no passengers from the affected countries enter the country unscreened.
Mrs Yakubu said : “There will be an enforcement of all the Protocols and procedures put in place for the covid-19 already on ground.”
“All the Agencies concerned and Port Health, Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority, NCAA, FAAN ,etc have been all put on notice to ensure no passenger comes into the Country with this variant.”
Also speaking with Vanguard, the General Manager Public Affairs, NCAA, Mr Sam Adurogboye said the regulator is waiting for directives from the Presidential Committee on Covid-19.
He said all measures and directives usually come from the Committee and it directs NCAA on what to enforce. “We are waiting for the Presidential Steering Committee to issues directives on ways to prevent the spread of the new variant to Nigeria. NCAA can only enforce the federal government directives,” Adurogboye emphasised.
Recall on Sunday, the Director-General of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, Dr Ifedayo Adetifa, said in a statement  that the centre is  “prioritising sequencing of recently accrued samples from SARS-COV-2 positive travellers from all countries, especially those from countries that have reported the Omicron variant already.”
Though Canada said on Sunday it has detected its first cases of the new Omicron strain of Covid in two people who had travelled recently to Nigeria,
the Federal Government had claimed that the new COVID-19 variant was not in Nigeria yet.
Several countries receive InsurTech accelerator support

By Favour Nnabugwu


FSD (Financial Sector Deepening) Africa, an Africa-focused UK government funding agency, will extend its InsurTech accelerator program next year, targeting Ghana and Nigeria.

The agency is working with several insurance regulators, including those in Ghana and Nigeria, to create an environment conducive to technological innovation in insurance on the continent.

The plan follows the roll-out of an insurance accelerator program in Kenya earlier this year, reported

Under the acceleration programs, FSD Africa provides participants, including teams from selected InsurTechs, with knowledge and resources to develop and prepare their solutions for the African market.

InsurTechs introduce personalised policies using data from wearable technology and social platforms. They offer innovative products operating on the basis of micro-payments or pay-per-use, which increasingly influences market trends.

Venture capital and other support

In addition to installing the accelerator, FSD Africa wants to set up access to capital through a venture capital fund for InsurTechs on the continent in the start-up phase. In addition, a platform will be put online where the various players in the sector can exchange views to share their experiences or forge partnerships to support the growth of their various businesses.

Germany to subside disaster risk in ARC member states

The German government has announced funds of EUR18m ($20.4m) to subsidise the cost of disaster risk insurance for qualifying African Risk Capacity (ARC) member states.

Dr Maria Flachsbarth, the parliamentary state secretary to the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), said this on the margins of the United Nations 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26) earlier this month.


TatessFollowing the COVID-19 pandemic, many African governments have severely constrained budgets and humanitarian agencies are struggling to meet unprecedented levels of need. This new funding will subsidise insurance premiums, decreasing in future years as countries and organisations are able to take over the costs using their national budgets and long-term sustainable financing.


ARC, an African Union (AU) initiative led by 35 AU member states, provides insurance for droughts and tropical cyclones. The standard approach to pay for climate disasters is slow and unpredictable, using humanitarian appeals or loans arranged after a disaster strikes. ARC replaces these outdated approaches by offering governments and humanitarian actors the opportunity to plan and purchase insurance that can provide fast payouts, quickly reaching people who need support.

Since 2014, 62 policies have been signed by member states for cumulative insurance coverage of $720m for the protection of 72m vulnerable people in participating countries.

ARC Group consists of ARC Agency and ARC Insurance Company (ARC Ltd). ARC Agency was established in 2012 as a specialised AU agency to help the member states improve their capacities to better plan, prepare and respond to weather-related disasters. ARC Ltd is a mutual insurance facility providing risk transfer services to member states through risk pooling and access to reinsurance markets.

NCRIB, BIBA tightens collaboration for growth


L- Managing Director, Risk Analyst Insurance Brokers, Dr. (Mrs.) Funmi Babington-Asaye; President, Nigerian Council of Registered Insurance Brokers, Rotimi Edu; Chief Executive, British Insurance Brokers Association (BIBA), Steve White and Managing Director, Leverage Insurance Brokers Limited, Hon Lanre Laoshe during a courtesy visit of NCRIB delegates to BIBA Office in London.


By Favour Nnabugwu


The Nigerian Council of Registered Insurance Brokers (NCRIB) has tightened its collaboration with British Insurance Brokers Association (BIBA) for the betterment of the association

The President of the Council, Rotimi Edu, during his visit to BIBA in London said there were increasing areas of collaboration between the NCRIB and BIBA in the light of unfolding challenges post by the post COVID-19 era.

Edu, who appreciated the past support of BIBA to the Council noted that the NCRIB Members would latch more on the expertise of BIBA Members in strategic areas such as Oil & Gas, Risk Management and Strategic Leadership.

On the forth coming BIBA Conference, the NCRIB President, Edu promised that the Council’s delegates will make an impressive appearance in other to take advantage of the focus of the Conference.

Responding, the Chief Executive of BIBA, Steve White congratulated Mr. Edu for emerging as the President of the Council and reaffirmed BIBA’s readiness to share knowledge and data with the Council when and where necessary.

The President was joined by Dr. (Mrs) Funmi Babington-Ashaye, Managing Director, Risk Analyst Insurance Brokers and Hon. Lanre Laoshe of Leverage Insurance Brokers.

CBN defends Naira with $2.1bn to halt further depreciation

By Sandra Adesiyan


In an effort to keep the Naira from crashing further the Central Bank of Nigeria(CbN) pumped $2.1 billion to the Investors and Exporters (I&E) window of the foreign exchange market in the first seven months of 2021.

The amount was an increased by 238 percent when compared with the $621.1 million injected to defend it in the same window in in the corresponding period of 2020 (7mths-2020).

It also represented a 47 percent increase when compared with the $1.43 billion injected in the first 7 months of 2019.

These figures were obtained from CBN’s monthly economic report published on its website.

According to CBN data, the highest amount injected this year was $474.65 million in April while the lowest amount of $195.91 million was recorded in June.

While the intervention helped keep Naira hovering around N412 to 414, it came at a cost of depleting reserves that was replenished with debts.

You will recall that last month, Vice President Yemi Osinbajo called on the Central Bank of Nigeria to allow market forces control the exchange rate.

He said: The real issue confronting the economy on this matter is how to improve the supply of foreign exchange, but this will not happen if we do not allow mechanisms like the Importers and Exporters window to work. If we allow this market mechanism to work as intended, we will find that the Naira will appreciate against the dollar as we restore confidence in the system.”

Although CBN had adopted the flexible I & E window as its official exchange rate, it remained the single source of dollar supply thereby having a significant influence on how the market turns out daily.