News24 Apr 2016

Algeria:Insurers need to enter SME market for business growth

24 Apr 2016

There is huge market potential for insurers in the small and medium-sized enterprise (SME) and micro-sized enterprise sectors, which form 90% of the Algerian economy, according to Mr Adelane Mecellem, CEO of AXA Algeria. The insurance potential lies in areas including civil liability, fire risk, and water damage.

Speaking in a radio programme at M Radio, the Internet radio unit of  Maghreb Emergent, he said: “There should be compulsory insurance for these companies."

He said that with the sharp decline in vehicle imports that affected the insurance sector in 2015, insurers must find new sources of growth. The turnover of the insurance industry is growing at 1.6%, much slower than the double-digit increases enjoyed before 2014, he said.

He suggested that insurers take a two-prong approach to step up growth: find new niches so as to target new customer segments and increase insurance premiums in "under-priced" classes of business.

He also sees potential in multi-risk home insurance provided it is made compulsory along with health and group life insurance.

In addition, Mr Mecellem views under-priced insurance tariffs, such as in motor, as a burden on insurers. He said: “There is no reason that there is inflation in the prices of vehicles without increases in insurance rates."

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