All people to bring under insurance coverage for national interest: IDRA Chairman
Md Joynal Abedin Khan: The insurances’ contribution is still remaining in poor condition in the role of the country’s economy due to lack of the confidence of the common people. Contribution of the insurance sector to the economy is 0.57 per cent while it is 3.69 per cent in India and 2.36 per cent in Indonesia, Finance Ministry sources said.
The insurance sector needs to gain confidence for bringing all under the insurance coverage, they said. There are some problems in the sector, but it has huge potential also, they commented.
Compared to its South Asian counterparts, including India, Bangladesh has the lowest premium per capita, according to them.
The Insurance Development and Regulatory Authority (IDRA) is working to gain the public confidence in the insurance sector, said its Chairman Mosharraf Hossain. Though there is some disappointment about the sector, some reforms have been going on, he said. All the people should be brought under the insurance coverage. If this can be done, it would benefit both the people and the insurance companies.
An ongoing big project worth over Tk 600 crore taken by the government will ensure faster upgradation and automation of the insurance sector, the IDRA Chairman said. The true purpose of insurance will be served only if we can make the service faster and smoother, which can be ensured through automation, he said.
We are prioritising claim settlements. As it is a contractual obligation, we are trying to mitigate the risks and negativities. Even a client with a small claim should be given high priority, he stated.
A total of 60 insurance companies are functioning in the country. Of these companies, 57 are private, two state-owned and one is foreign insurance directorate, under the ministry of commerce. At present there are 44 general insurance companies running in Bangladesh. Many other private companies are about to commerce. Currently, sixty three insurance organizations including postal life insurance are running their operation in Bangladesh but only 19 insurers are proposing life insurance policies. Bangladesh’s life and non-life insurance companies with a combined annual turnover of around Tk 135 billion, according to him.
Sayedur Rahman, president of Bangladesh Merchant Bankers’ Association AKM Rashed Shahriar said that the automating system may accelerate the insurance business.
The project money will also be spent for the upgradation of the insurance regulator, better monitoring of the companies to ensure better service for clients, ensuring transparency and accountability, building IT infrastructure and establishing distance learning centres, he opined.
“Considering the ongoing pandemic, more product and process innovation are needed to improve customer experience and that can be achieved through digital transformation, said MM Monirul Alam, CEO of Guardian Life Insurance.
Moving towards innovation will help in serving the marginal segment of the society, which will not only bring in revenues for the industry but also boost penetration to a great extent, said Farzana Chowdhury, CEO of Green Delta Insurance.
Insurance is basically a risk transfer mechanism, said Md Apel Mahmud, CEO of Prime Islami Life Insurance.
“We want regaining the confidence to the confused people. We want to create more awareness. As a service industry, we have to fight and give the right kind of service to our customers at the right time,” he said.
The rapidly changing in the life insurance sector after the pandemic to be restored soon, said Md Apel Mahmud, CEO of Prime Islami Life Insurance.
“Most of the insurance companies weren’t aware of the fact that we can also do office work without going to the office. A change is needed to create a platform where insurance companies can give service without face-to-face communication,” he said.