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Stakeholders call for deregulation of agricultural insurance

by Business News Report

Stakeholders in the agricultural sector have called for a total deregulation of agricultural insurance through an amendment of the Nigerian Agricultural Insurance Corporation (NAIC) Act of 1993. This was contained in communiqué issued after a meeting of the stakeholders in Abuja and signed by Mr Ewa Eleri, the Director, and International Centre for Energy, Environment and Development (ICEED).
The communiqué stated that the Federal Ministry of Agriculture has already taken steps to establish a broad based stakeholder committee to facilitate the amendment of the act. It said that the National Insurance Commission affirmed the right of private insurance companies to participate in the agricultural insurance market, with the exception of primary crop production, as protected by the existing legislation.
The stakeholders also called for an urgent and expanded coverage of agricultural insurance to accommodate millions of farmers and to boost innovative agricultural insurance market to ensure food security, employment and economic growth. They also agreed that capacity building and expansion of weather monitoring infrastructure would be a pre-condition for developing the market for agricultural insurance in Nigeria.
The communiqué stated that the Nigeria Incentive-Based Risk Sharing System for Agricultural Lending (NIRSAL), a unit in the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), had been mandated to work with all insurance stakeholders to improve technical assistance and productive innovation in the market. It said that the stakeholders committed Nigeria Agricultural Insurance Corporation (NAIC) to ensure the growth of the agricultural sector and protect farmers from climatic and other risks.
According to the communiqué, NAIC expresses its total support for ongoing reforms in the agricultural insurance sector. The stakeholders expressed the commitment of the insurance industry and the Nigeria Insurers Association (NIA) to participate fully in the emerging agricultural insurance market in the country. Participants were drawn from the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Insurance Industry, National Insurance Commission, the Central Bank of Nigeria, Nigerian Meteorological Agency, commercial banks, farmers, international experts, international agencies and NGOs. The theme of the workshop was “Protecting Nigeria’s Farmers from Climate Change”.

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