As part of his work in Kenya and Nigeria, Thierry van Bastelaer had the opportunity to work closely with private health insurers who are committed to finding affordable solutions to increase poor families' access to health care. These insurers are keenly aware that this requires finding a myriad ways to cut costs everywhere possible, despite the fact that they are viewed with suspicion by development practitioners who perceive them as either avoiding the low-income market or trying to make huge profits from it.
Digital technologies are rapidly changing the insurance landscape worldwide. In Africa currently, mobile insurance is prevalent, but other digital technologies are on the rise too, helping to provide a large number of households with coverage for the very first time.
The Microinsurance Network attended the 2017 FARAD Finance Forum which took place in Luxembourg earlier this month. Organised by FARAD International, an independent insurance broker specialised in the Private Life Insurance sector, the event was held as a full-day forum for the first time, and brought together players of the three pillars of the financial industry: the banking sector, the insurance industry and investment funds.
While microcredit and savings have historically dominated the financial-inclusion conversation, there is growing recognition for the innovative ways that microinsurers are bringing services to the people who need them most.
“The Financial Inclusion Challenge” competition, run by The Wall Street Journal, showcases nonprofit and for-profit enterprises that are solving problems of financial access for the poor in the Asia-Pacific region.