Uganda’s Insurance Regulatory Authority (IRA) is pushing for the enforcement of last year’s insurance law, intended to increase the amount of marine insurance undertaken domestically.
The Uganda Insurers Association has embarked on efforts to inform importers about marine insurance in a bid to complement efforts by IRA encourage the local purchase of marine insurance.
They are targeting the Uganda Shippers Council, Uganda Clearing and Forwarders Association, Uganda National Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Uganda Small Scale Industries Association, Kampala City Traders’ Association (KACITA) as well as other groups such as car importers, manufacturers, printers, freight forwarders and haulage operators in an attempt to bring cargo insurance home.
IRA chief executive Ibrahim Lubega Kaddunabbi claimed that Ugandan importers would start to appreciate that purchasing insurance from a local insurer was cheaper and that it gave buyers more control over the types and levels of insurance purchased.
“The most obvious benefit is that it is easier to engage an insurance company in Uganda as opposed to one in another country and with local marine purchase, a trader will be able to reduce the importation costs and the anxiety related to loss and damage,” he said.
Last June the Ugandan Ministry of Finance made a key pronouncement in the Budget for fiscal year 2017/18, stating that it was “empowering locally licensed insurance companies to issue all policies relating to domestic marine cargo insurance effective July 1, 2017 and that IRA administratively enforce and implement the provisions in the Insurance Act under Section (3) (2).”
Section 3 (2) states that no person, other than a person licensed as an insurer under the act, shall issue any insurance policy on ‘Goods imported from other countries except personal effects and donations’.
However, the implementation is yet to take effect.