Ghana's insurance industry is thriving. With a yearly average growth rate of 36.7%, it has a huge potential for future growth in both the life and general insurance markets. Competition has been keen in the life insurance market since passage of the 2008 insurance bill which required the separation of life and non-life businesses and increased the capital requirement to GHC 7 billion. Since then, life insurance penetration has grown to 3% and the number of underwriting companies increased by 11%. Claims incurred have increased by 38%. With proper support for future growth, the industry is poised to fulfill an important role in the country's economic development by providing financial security for businesses and individuals.
The major players in the life insurance market include:
- Enterprise Life
- Star Life
- Gemini Life Insuranc
- e Company (GLICO)
- Vanguard Assurance.
Major players in the general insurance (non-life) include:
- Unique Insurance
- Donewell Insurance
- Metropolitan Insurance
The discovery of oil in Ghana has created enormous opportunities for the insurance industry. While exploration is ongoing, insurance companies are looking at forming a consortium in order to maximise the opportunities created by this discovery. It’s a difficult process because many insurance companies are solely owned and are slow in coming together. Local companies are now being made aware of the business opportunities of forming consortiums, and gradually partnerships are being formed to bring the industry together.
The insurance industry in Ghana faces the following challenges:
- Lack of capital
- Lack of expertise within the insurance industry – more training is needed.
- Public awareness – there is little understanding of the purposes of insurance and a sense of mistrust of insurance companies. The industry will need to build public awareness and confidence.
- Discrepancies in the payment of claims -- often the result of a lack of understanding of insurance policies and products.
- Bureaucracy and administrative approvals slow processes.
Investment opportunities are vast, especially for life insurance. Investment is needed to raise capital to boost the industry in more products and offerings. Ghana's main advantage in the insurance industry is related to the oil boom. This discovery provides a lot of opportunities for all of Ghana's industries, directly and non-directly related to insurance.