Micro-insurance will soon flourish: CIRM

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Mumbai, Sep 19: Insurers are competing to offer diverse and innovative product of micro-insurance and this particular sector will soon flourish into a mainstream market-based service, according to Ms Rupalee Ruchismita, Executive Director, Centre for Insurance and Risk Management (CIRM).

Addressing a conference on 'Indian Micro-insurance: What Works?', organised by Institute for Financial Management and Research (IFMR) Ms Ruchismita said micro-insurance refers to insurance products for low-income individuals, who are not served by typical insurance schemes. Currently, only two per cent of the global micro-insurance market has been tapped. Unfortunatly, dissemination and product education are difficult-many poor, who do not see a need for insurance, or trust the companies that offer it, she said.

Micro-finance institutions can serve as distributor, educator and advisor to potential micorinsurance customers. In the context of rural financial inclusion, the micro-insurance sector is vital, as financial inclusion aims to provide savings, credit, remittance and insurance services to the weaker and vulnerable sections of the country at affordable cost, she said.

Speaking to UNI on the sidelines of the event, National Bank for Agricultural and Rural Development (NABARD), Chief General Manager Mr A Ramanathan said, ''NABARD is constantly looking for new initiatives to take the sector further. Microfinance Insights is a unique knowledge generator and network builder in the sector.'' He hoped it will go a long way in supporting knowledge generation about microinsurance in India. NABARD decided to support 'Indian Mircoinsurance: What Works?' to help encourage the development of micro-insurance initiatives, he said.

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