From Uche Usim, Abuja 

In a move towards strengthening the insurance sector and the economy in general, the National Insurance Commission (NAICOM) is eyeing to rake in N1 trillion premium by 2024, just as it is working towards implementing the risk-based recapitalisation in the same year.

The recapitalisation galvanises insurance companies to underwrite risks based on their capital.

The Commissioner for Insurance and NAICOM Chief Executive Officer, Sunday Thomas, who made the disclosure in an interview with journalists recently in Abuja, said planned feats empty into his desire to take the agency to the next level.

According to him, the pilot scheme of the risk-based recapitalisation kicked off last year and offered some insurance companies the platform to appreciate a risk-based supervision environment.

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He said: “It has been quite revealing about the operations of these institutions. We are taking it to a new level, risk-based capital. If you know the history of capital in this country, it has been an issue and we want to remove that. You can trade, for instance, as a motor third party insurance company, based on your capital.

“Then, if you want to trade in the highly volatile business environment of oil and gas, you also must provide the needed capital to be able to run at that level. That is where we are going now. The one cap fits all, will no longer be the case.

“This year, we will be closing on that and before I finish the first tenure, it will be operational. We are in partnership with the multilateral institutions in our quest to evolve this risk-based capital. Our staff members have gone through a lot of training in this area and it’s been quite helpful,” he noted.

On attaining the N1 trillion premium mark, Thomas noted that when he was appointed Acting Commissioner, the market production in terms of premium was about N400 billion to N520 billion. 

“But by 2022, the market recorded more than N730 billion. But I’m still not satisfied yet, because my target before I finish my first term in office is N1 trillion. 

“The total assets moved from about N1.3 trillion in 2018 to about N2.5 trillion in 2022. We are making progress but looking at our economy, these, to me, are small numbers. I will also say that our methodology is also changing. Inspection used to be compliance-based with a checklist. But now, the world has moved to risk-based supervision,” he stated.