Insurers, UN collaborate on climatic risk management

Some industry leaders in the African insurance sector and the United Nations Environment have agreed on collaborative initiatives in the region to drive economic, social and environmental sustainability.

Continental Reinsurance Plc said in a statement that the UN Secretary General, Antonio Guterres, said that the work of the United Nations in peace and security, human rights, development, and in relation to climate change could only succeed in the world if it succeeded in Africa.

The Group Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Continental Re Plc, Dr Femi Oyetunji said,  “The recent devastation wrought by Cyclone Idai, and now Cyclone Kenneth, is yet another wake-up call for the urgent need for action and collaboration to better manage risk and support sustainable development.”

It recalled that under the auspices of the UN Environment’s Principles for Sustainable Insurance Initiative, a collaborative initiative between the UN and the African insurance leaders, practitioners, climate change experts, disaster resilience and sustainability experts, convened in Lagos for the second PSI African market event.

The event, which was hosted by Continental Re, the first African reinsurer to sign the PSI, focused on three main sustainability issues in Africa which were closing the risk protection gap; resilient cities, and sustainable food systems and agriculture.

“The second PSI African market event was a real success. We now have a set of concrete priorities for the next year to move from awareness to action, and achieve positive impact,” he said.

According to the statement, the purpose of the event was to share experiences and ideas to support the growth, resilience and sustainability of the African insurance industry, and to drive sustainable development.

At the event, participants agreed that there was a fundamental need to better demonstrate the value proposition of the insurance industry as risk managers, insurers and investors in addressing sustainability issues.

It stated that the value had to be communicated effectively to stakeholders from individuals and households, to businesses and governments.