According to the Independent, the insurance industry is being forced to make adjustments in the wake of COVID-19.
Industry changes are emerging in response to concerns from consumers that they would not be compensated for COVID-19 related losses. The pandemic introduced unforeseen challenges, such as the forced closure of businesses and loss of jobs.
Events that are not included in insurable risks are usually exempt. Insurers have since developed insurance products to cover risks like this.
The Insurance Brokers Association of Uganda (IBAU) is looking for ways to respond to challenges like COVID-19, while balancing business needs and customer confidence.
The recent IBAU Conference held on April 8 was themed ‘Navigating Risk in Today’s Changing World’. The conference covered factors that may affect risk, such as the shift to working from home, curfews, and other regulations.
The Independent reports that IBAU Chairman, Solomon Rubondo, admits the industry was not prepared when COVID-19 first broke out. According to Mr. Rubondo, it was challenging to foresee what trends may develop from an event like COVID-19, and when it may end.
Mr. Rubondo says that the laws governing the industry actually provide for many of the current risks. However, because the laws are not being followed, many people lost properties without compensation. He cites properties in Kampala which are not insured. Mr. Rubondo says all property on land leased from the KCCA must be insured, according to law. He says that IBAU is consulting with KCCA to ensure this regulation is enforced.
PML Daily reported that Paul Kavuma, Chief Executive Officer of Uganda Insurers Association (UIA), said that the outbreak of COVID-19 forced Ugandans to recognize Insurance as an essential service in one’s life and property.
He said that although COVID-19 jeopardised people’s businesses and lives and had a negative impact on the economy, insurance companies continued to ensure that their customers received the services they paid for.
“The lockdown affected everyone but what amuses is that during the lockdown, insurance companies registered a lot of accidents especially Bodabodas, those who were on insurances their claims were paid. We also paid people who were affected by the overflow of lake Victoria. Many businesses that were on the shores were affected we paid their claims, also farmers who were affected by floods and landslides in the East their claims were paid,” Mr. Kavuma said.
Paul Muhame, the Chief Executive Officer of Ballpack Inc. cited the increase in the health risk that has been caused by COVID-19, and appealed to the public to appreciate the changing face of risks as the industry works out the right approaches.
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