Members of the Moroccan Union of Insurance Agents and Brokers (UMAC) plan to hold protests in the middle of each month from June onwards.
The union, warning of an “unprecedented crisis in the insurance sector”, also reportedly held a sit-in on 14 June in front of the headquarters of the Moroccan Federation of Insurance and Reinsurance Companies (FMSAR) in Casablanca.
The decisions were made following the cancellation of a meeting that had been scheduled in May that would have brought together representatives of the FMSAR, the Insurance and Social Insurance Supervisory Authority (ACAPS), UMAC, and the National Federation of Insurance Agents and Brokers in Morocco (FNACAM).
UMAC’s grievances include:
- Unfair competition from some credit institutions which market insurance policies even though they are not legally authorised to undertake insurance intermediary business;
- The lack of a legal framework that regulates the activities of insurance brokers; and
- Broking or agency commission or fee rates that have long remained unchanged. The union is asking for a 25% increase in commission rates, in addition to a minimum fee of MAD250 ($26) for each insurance case.
In a statement, UMAC said that for the smooth running of the scheduled meeting, the four groups had agreed to validate, beforehand, the contents of a statement to be issued at the end of the talks. UMAC requested a confirmatory declaration from FMSAR concerning the proposed new remuneration sums. However, according to UMAC, the FMSAR did not respond and, consequently, the May meeting did not take place.
The protests to be staged by the intermediaries would not be the first such event as strikes had been previously organised against insurers for ignoring demands by intermediaries for commission rate increases.
Meanwhile, on the subject of rapprochement between the two associations of intermediaries, UMAC and FNACAM, two scenarios were proposed by UMAC: either a merger leading to a new entity that would be voted on by members of the two bodies, or a confederation governed by statute with the sole purpose of negotiating commission rates and fees with stakeholders.
The integration between the two industry bodies has been discussed for several years.
FNACAM was established in 1993 from the merger of GICAR (an inter-professional group of insurance and reinsurance brokers) and UNACAM (National Union of Insurance Agents and Brokers).
UMAC was established following the change in status of the Moroccan Union of Insurance Agents (UMAG) which amended its constitution in 2015 to accept insurance brokers as members, so as to boost its representation, before the 2016 establishment of ACAPS.
Morocco’s insurance industry has about 1,500 agents and 500 intermediaries. M
MAD1 = $0.10