Regulator Issues Equity Group with an insurance business license
The Insurance Regulatory Authority (IRA) has issued a license to Equity Group to venture into the insurance business.
The new venture dubbed Equity Life Assurance is a fully fledged business with separate structures and commercial arrangements in line with the IRA regulations.
Speaking during the issuance of the license, The Commissioner of Insurance & Chief Executive Officer (CEO) IRA Mr. Godfrey Kiptum reiterated that the diversification strategy and entry of Equity Group into the insurance market is proof that the insurance industry in Kenya continues to be attractive to investors.
“We continue to receive interests from foreign based financial institutions ranging from brokers, insurers, re-insurance brokers and re-insurance companies looking for investments in the Kenyan Assurance market. This underscores the position of Kenya as a viable investment destination,” he said.
Kenya’s insurance industry has continued to enjoy steady growth over the years with the insurance market premiums currently being valued at approximately Ksh235 billion. The market, however remains driven by the general business category with long term insurance premiums standing at Ksh. 102 billion. This accounts for 43.4% of the total premiums underwritten.
“We are witnessing a growth compared to last year and this is attributed to the Covid 19 recovery measures. Our market, however, is still general business driven and I call upon Equity Life Assurance to identify strategies of increasing insurance growth in the long-term business,” he said. With the entry of Equity Life Assurance Company, the country will now have a total of 62 operational insurance and re-insurance companies.
He emphasized the need to develop ways of enhancing value and trust in life insurance and its distribution if there is to be growth in this class while explaining the important role played by insurance. He added that globally, insurance business is at a critical stage as the sector responds to social, economic and technological challenges. He explained that the industry continues to benefit from a growing educated population, change in cultural norms, increased urbanization, investment in infrastructure, improved technology and distribution channels.
Mr. Kiptum said that the government through the IRA is committed to providing an enabling environment to ensure that the insurance sector remains competitive. “Kenya is among the best performing countries in Africa in insurance business largely due to innovative distribution channels, a liberalized market and strong regulation,” he concluded.