The National Insurance Commission, NAICOM, wary of the technicalities in the International Financial Reporting Standard (IFRS) 17, expected to commence by June 2023, has advised all the stakeholders in the insurance sector in the country to key into the new reporting template.
The NAICOM, explained that when they educate themselves they can effectively monitor financial positions of their companies.
Commissioner for Insurance Sunday Thomas, gave the advise when members of Independent Shareholders Association of Nigeria (ISAN) visited the Commission in Abuja.
Thomas told the shareholders that IFRS 17, would change how insurance companies present and report their financial statements. He urged the shareholders to consult their companies on how they could be trained on the new reporting standard.
He noted that with the adoption of IFRS 17, financial statements of insurance companies would no longer carry gross premium, though the balance sheet will remain the same.
The Insurance Industry regulator, who was excited by the visit, told the shareholders that NAICOM needs a robust relationship with them so as to effectively regulated the industry.
He submitted that NAICOM is committed to protection of all stakeholders – policyholders; shareholders and residual owners.
Responding to the shareholders demand for better value of their shares at the Nigerian Exchange, Thomas said investors in insurance sector need to be very patient so as to maximize their profits, adding that there is beautiful future for the sector.
He also told the shareholders that insurance companies, do comply with the local content policy, adding that companies only cede abroad risks they do not have the capacity to underwrite.
“Shareholders need to be educated on how they insurance industry works and the capital market by way of looking beyond the financials,” he posited.
Thomas told the shareholders to hold members of board of their companies responsible for most problems suffered by their companies, stressing that as investors, they should be interested on how their investments are managed.
The Commissioner urged the shareholders to promote corporate governance by ensuring competent individuals are elected as board members of their companies.
He implored them to take responsibility of internal evaluation of board reports and comport themselves during annual general meetings.
He charged shareholders elected to internal audit committee to exercise their duties and ensure quality control.
National Coordinator Independent Shareholders Association of Nigeria, Moses Igbrude, applauded NAICOM for the meeting, whilst seeking for involvement of shareholders in major decisions taking on companies.
He expressed misgivings on how some foreign firms were allowed to take over 100 stakes in some companies without the involvement of minority shareholders.
He implored NAICOM to work together insurance practitioners to promote insurance education, stressing that most Nigerians don’t buy insurance due to wrong perception arising from low awareness.