• IC targets 50M for microinsurance

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    THE Insurance Commission (IC) sees a robust microinsurance industry as it targets to increase the number of insured individuals in the country in the next two to three years.

    IC Commissioner Emmanuel Dooc said they expect that individual Filipinos who are insured through microinsurance would grow to 50 million by 2018 or 2019 from the current 30 million plus.

    “Our latest official count is 28 million as of 2014. So, easily we are now well over 30 million,” he noted.

    Dooc said they already surpassed their original 20-20 target for the microinsurance or at least 20 percent of the population are insured by the year 2020.

    “We have long ago exceeded that because we are now at 40 and it is now 2016,” Dooc told reporters at the sidelines of the 2016 Ready: Disaster Resilience Forum in Makati City on Wednesday.

    Instead of a 20 percent target, he said they are expecting that at least 60 to 70 percent of the population would be insured by 2020.

    “With more participants in micro insurance program, we could drive up the number of insured and the premiums generated,” the Insurance chief added.

    To meet such target, Dooc said, they have to encourage more players to participate in micro-insurance particularly the big ones with networks throughout the country.

    “They will see that there is money in micro,” he added.

    Dooc said for 2015 alone, roughly three percent or P7.2 billion of the P233 billion estimated premium contribution came from mutual benefit associations (MBAs), major providers of micro-insurance.

    To date, there are 23 micro MBAs, 18 life insurance companies, 24 non-life insurance companies, 42 rural/cooperative bank agents and around 100 microinsurance agents engaged in the provision of microinsurance products.

    Jean Henri Lhuillier, president and CEO of PJ Lhuillier Inc., said they will make microinsurance more accessible, affordable and relevant.

    He added that Cebuana Lhuillier Microinsurance plans to expand its operation to five key cities in the country–Baguio, Davao, Naga, Tacloban and Cebu–to insure more people and help them especially in times of disasters and calamities.

    “We are committed 110 percent. We know we have the network, we understand microinsurance but more than that is helping communities. We go out there to meet that financial need,” Lhuillier said.

    He expressed belief that microinsurance is one of the best existing tools to mitigate impact of natural disasters.

    For this year, Lhuillier said his company will be introducing two more microinsurance products to the market that include micro disaster insurance and

    Alagang Cebuana Gold.

    In terms of claims, Lhuillier said since 1999, the company has already paid a total of P140 million.

    With the support of its insurers, Cebuana Lhuillier Insurance Solutions has already covered more than five million Filipinos.

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