Bangladesh: Call to Allow MFIs to Introduce Micro-insurance

Nov 2015
Bangladesh, November, 26 2015 - Microfinance institutions should be allowed to provide small insurance services to bring the borrowers under the social security framework, speakers said on Wednesday.

They also laid emphasis on identifying the impediments that hinder the growth of the micro-insurance sector.

The observations came during a seminar on micro insurance at Palli Karma Shahayak Foundation (PKSF) in the city. PKSF organised the seminar where banking and financial institution division secretary M Aslam Alam was present as the chief guest.

The MFIs should offer insurance services, he said, adding the policymakers and stakeholders should hold dialogue on a regular basis to prepare a regulatory framework.

He noted that MFIs have been providing health and other insurance services with support from development partners. Grant may be needed for piloting the crop insurance through MFIs.

PKSF chairman Qazi Kholiquzzaman Ahmad said micro insurance is part of the social security.

"We have to advance by properly identifying the challenges for the sector to take off," he said.

PKSF managing director Abdl Karim said the MFIs can be allowed to offer insurance services for helping the overall insurance sector flourish.

JICA senior adviser Kazuto Tsuji said it is necessary to evaluate the satisfaction of the policy holders for ensuring the effectiveness of micro insurance.

Professor Baqi Khalily said traditional insurance companies have been playing a positive role. So a 'creative' alternative way should be devised for re-insurance in microfinance sector. 

PKSF has been providing insurance services to about 5.5 million micro credit borrowers of its partner organisations. The project titled 'Developing Inclusive Insurance Sector Project' funded by Asian Development Bank (ADB) ended in December last year. The four components of the project were: micro insurance, health insurance, cattle insurance and paramedic insurance. 


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