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Experts Discuss Digitization of Agriculture Insurance through Parametric Solutions

After the digital session held in December on the topic of “Vaccine Economics, Trade, China and Growth in Africa” with Ludovic Subran, Chief Economist at Allianz SE, Allianz Africa Wednesday held a second webinar on “The Digitization of Agriculture Insurance Through Parametric Solutions” in partnership with Allianz Re.

As Allianz prepares to expand its presence in the East African insurance market – building on a solid foundation in Kenya and with the acquisition of the majority of shares in Jubilee General Insurance Company in Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Mauritius and Burundi – this event is the second of a series aiming at sharing with stakeholders pan African solutions that the Allianz Group can offer through its footprint in Africa, by extending to the continent its expertise as a worldwide insurance leader.

Allianz Africa brought together agriculture and insurance experts such as Reto Schneider, Regional Head of Agriculture at Allianz Re, Lovemore Forichi, Senior Underwriter of Agriculture at Allianz Re, Gregoire Tombez, CEO of WARM Consulting Group Ltd and Co-founder of Green Triangle, Erastus Ndege Ochieng, Asset Manager, Agriculture Underwriting at Africa Re, Omondi Kasidhi, Head, Sustainable Agriculture Sourcing of Diageo PLC and Delphine Traore, COO of Allianz Africa, to discuss the topic.

“There is an ever increasing need to invest in agriculture, given the vital importance of agriculture as a food source, especially in view of the increase in global population”, declared Delphine Traoré, to explain the interest of Allianz Africa for

sustainability in the agricultural sector. Indeed, agriculture production makes up a substantial portion of the continent’s GDP in Africa, yet only a small portion of the producers are insured. Raising awareness of the vital role that agriculture insurance plays in sustaining agricultural production is a key step to increasing insurance penetration in the sector. Delphine added: “Allianz Africa aims to contribute towards closing the protection gap and position itself as a leading agriculture (re)insurance provider on the continent.’’

In addition, climate risks increase the need for investments to make agriculture more resilient, following the panel’s experts. They agreed that the development and commercialization of agriculture requires financial services that can support. To this end, agricultural insurance is strategically important for eradicating extreme poverty, boosting prosperity and protecting livelihoods.

In 2020, the insurance industry recorded a cumulative premium of approx. 300mn USD from agricultural insurance. The Southern and Eastern regions of Africa contributed more than 80% of the recorded premium.

Eastern Africa recently recorded an improvement in its trajectory. Reto Schneider stated that “the agricultural sector in the insurance industry could reach the potential of 1bn USD within 10 years, provided that penetration can be substantially increased.”

During the webinar, parametrics solutions were presented as the direction for the future. They bring a number of advantages such as high accuracy with state-of-the-art satellite information, hybrid products to address additional perils, increased efficiency through fully paperless processes, fast and automated payouts possible, high level of traceability, combination with loans and integration of the value chain.

Despite certain limitations, “technology is closing the gap between indemnity and parametric crop insurance and allows to get the best of both worlds in a single product”, Gregoire Tombez, CEO of WARM Consulting Group Ltd and Co-founder of GreenTriangle stated.

To have a reliable parametrics system that provides efficient solutions, the panel emphasized the necessity to bring significant improvements through product suitability, affordability, value chain efficiency, distribution, information and training.

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