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PENSIONS AND INSURANCE GROWTH ENHANCED

By BUUMBA CHIMBULU

VARIOUS regulatory frameworks meant to facilitate the growth of the pensions and insurance industries while protecting policy holders have been put in place by Government.

While some measures have been revised to suit the current macroeconomic situation, the market has experienced new developments in an effort to protect policyholders and support pensioners.

The revised guidelines have been developed to be more responsive to economic and emerging investment opportunities, says Pensions and Insurance Authority (PIA) acting Registrar, Tresford Chiyavula.

Mr Chiyavula said PIA welcomed the revision of the Pension Scheme Investment Guidelines Regulations, Statutory Instrument No. 50 of 2021.

The salient features of the Investment Guidelines include; removed minimum limits on collective investments schemes and corporate bonds, increased threshold in investment classes and introduction of new investment classes.

He told the media yesterday in Lusaka that Pension Funds played a pivotal role in a country’s development and in contributing to economic growth particularly through providing financing to productive investment activities.

“Over the years, it had been noted that the Investment Guidelinesremained static yet there have been many emerging investment opportunities and changes in the world economies,” Mr Chiyavula said.

The Insurance (Fidelity Fund) Regulations, Statutory Instrument No. 38 of 2021 is another new development in the industry which Mr Chiyavula said would protect the policy holders.

Mr Chiyavula explained that the fund would protect policy holders and other persons interested in the policies prejudiced by the inability of an insurer carrying on business in Zambia, to meet its liabilities. “The Regulations have set out the rules to be followed in making a claim including determination of when to make a claim and the amount to be paid. “Further, the Regulations limits the payment out of the Fund for each Insurer or Insurance Broker in default, to 10 percent of the value of the Fund as at 31st December of the previous year of the application date,” he said.

On the 2021 Insurance Act, Mr Chiyavula said PIA welcomed its passing in the last session of  Parliament.

He indicated that PIA remained with a considered view that the new Act had progressive clauses and once operationalised would enhance the development of the insurance industry in Zambia.

Mr Chiyavula stated that some of the progressive clauses in the Bill included the regulation and supervision of micro-insurance.

The Bill, he said, also catered for the creation of a new solvency/capital adequacy framework that would respond to the level of risks that insurers and reinsurers carried to enable them build more resilience.

“The promulgation of marine cargo insurance that has been topical issue in the last couple of years, has also been provided in the Bill,” Mr Chiyavula said.

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