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Nigerian insurers operate as fringe players in Ghana

By on September 5, 2013

The subsidiaries set up by Nigerian insurance companies in Ghana are operating as fringe players as out of the 22 general insurers operating in Ghana, Nigerian subsidiaries which are Equity Assurance, WAPIC, Regency Alliance, IEI Ghana and NEM Insurance, placed 13th, 15th, 16th, 18th and 22nd respectively based on the premium income generated in 2012.

This development justifies the assertion by experts that insurers do not need to start setting up subsidiaries outside the country when the insurance potentials in the country have not been fully harnessed.

Investigations by Daily Independent revealed that Equity Assurance generated a premium income of 10.79 million Ghanaian Cedis (GH¢) in 2012 from 6.51 million GH¢ in 2011, WAPIC recorded a premium income of 9.76 million GH¢ in 2012 from 8.28 million GH¢ in 2011, Regency Alliance achieved a premium income of 6.32 GH¢ in 2012 from 3.26 million GH¢ in 2011, while the premium income of IEI Ghana decreased to 7.81 million GH¢ in 2012 from 8.16 million GH¢ in 2011. NEM Insurance premium income stood at 2.02 million GH¢ in 2012 from 4.06 million GH¢ in 2011.

Responding to the issue of offshore insurance offices opened by some Nigerian insurers, the Managing Director, Riskguard-Africa, Yemi Soladoye, said “I do not see it as an ideal development because we have not even utilised the insuring opportunities available in the country and most of those that have offices outside the country have nothing in there and there are better opportunities here in Nigeria.”

He added that the insurance regulator, National Insurance Commission (NAICOM) can handle the issue, pointing out that in “countries like India or China; the regulator will not prevent you from opening offshore branch, but it will mandate you that for any offshore branch you may want to open, you must open five of it at the local level.”

Besides, Soladoye informed that “in some countries, before they give you licence to open a branch in the urban centre; they will give you a target of number of branches you must open in the rural areas.”

Meanwhile, other general insurers in Ghana like SIC Insurance earned a premium income of 98.99 million GH¢ in 2012, Star Assurance (54.99 million GH¢), Metropolitan Insurance (44.69 million GH¢), Enterprise Insurance (43.07 million GH¢) and Vanguard Assurance (42.11 million GH¢).

Similarly, GLICO General achieved an income of 31.90 million GH¢ in 2012, Phoenix Insurance (20.90 million GH¢), Activa Int. (16.50 million GH¢), Quality Insurance (15.52 million GH¢), Ghana Union (14.52 million GH¢), while Allianz Ghana recorded a premium income of 14.22 million GH¢ in 2012 and Donewell Insurance (13.35 million GH¢).



[Daily Independent]