Government Policy

Raise public awareness about benefits of insurance, PM urges companies

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Tuesday urged insurance companies to take initiatives to increase public awareness about the benefits of having insurance policies.

“There’s a lack of awareness among people about the facilities of insurance. I hope that those who are involved in the insurance sector will take initiatives so that awareness among people could be increased,” she said.

She said this while inaugurating the National Insurance Day at Bangabandhu International Conference Center (BICC). She joined the programme virtually from her official residence Ganobhaban.

The finance ministry and the Insurance Development and Regulatory Authority (IDRA) jointly organised the function.

Hasina said that the insurance sector has to be digitised fully and put under automation for the convenience of the policy holders.

“If the paying of premium can be done digitally or through online system everyone will be interested. Technology should be incorporated in the insurance sector and there should be massive publicity about it,” she said.

She said that people have to be encouraged for insurance and policy holders have to get highest priority in this sector.

The PM put emphasis on building more confidence in the insurance sector.

“New techniques have to be applied to make people interested regarding insurance,” she said.

She mentioned that if people could get the service of insurance within their reach they would feel interested and their lives would be secured.

“For that insurance companies of public and private sectors have to work together,” she said.

The prime minister underlined the need for appropriate settlement of insurance claims and said the people concerned have to remain alert about the false claiming of insurance money.

“There were some instances of claiming excessive money against the actual losses from the insurance companies…you must remain alert regarding this,” she said.

She, however, called for quick settlement of the insurance claims without any hassle to the policy holders. “Policy holders’ claims have to be settled quickly and easily,” she said.

Talking about the development of the insurance sector, she said the government would send some people to get academic degrees from abroad in actuary.

The government will pay for their studies but they have to return to the country on completion of their studies and work, she added.

An actuary calculates the risk factors of clients by analysing their age, sex, occupation and heath condition and the insurance company sets premiums for customers based upon the risk factors.

Describing insurance as “deposit” of the subscribers, she stressed the need for ensuring their premium in an appropriate manner using modern technology and reach the amount to them maintaining due process.

The prime minister said, her government already announced steps to introduce Universal Pension Schemes for all citizens.

She said that the government has been working with a farsighted plan to protect lives of the people and improve their living standard.

Hasina recalled the involvement of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman in the insurance sector.

She said Bangabandhu had worked in the insurance industry alongside doing politics to meet his family expenses.

“During his job in Alpha Insurance company the father of the nation had formulated the historic Six Point Demands that led the country towards its independence,” she said.

After independence, Bangabandhu enacted necessary laws and formed institutional bodies to make the insurance industry more vibrant, she said.

Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal presided over the event virtually while Secretary of Financial Institutions Division, Ministry of Finance, Sheikh Mohammad Salim Ullah gave the welcome address.

Chairman of the IDRA Dr. M. Mosharraf Hossain and Bangladesh Insurance Association (BIA) President Sheikh Kabir Hossain, also spoke on the occasion.

On behalf of the PM, Secretary of Financial Institutions Division, Ministry of Finance, Sheikh Mohammad Salim Ullah handed over “Bima Padak” to five persons for their outstanding contribution to the insurance sectors and “Bangabandhu Surokhya Bima Policy” to two differently able children.

Former lawmakers and insurance personalities Mokbul Hossain and Mostafizur Rahman have been awarded posthumously with lifetime achievement for their significant contribution to the development of the insurance sector.

Insurance personalities, Sheikh Kabir Hossain and Nasir Uddin Ahmed Chowdhury were awarded for their special contribution to the development of the insurance sector.

Former secretary of the government Nazrul Islam Khan was also awarded for his contribution to make a documentary on insurance sector and Bangabandhu’s contribution for development of the sector.

A video documentary on the insurance sector was screened at the ceremony.

On 1 March, 1960, Father of the nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman started working at then-Alpha Insurance Company. Therefore, the government has decided to celebrate March 1 as the National Insurance Day.

Source: United News of Bangladesh