The Manufacturers Budget Dialogue was an event organized by UMA in partnership with the UIA & NCBA Bank. It too place on 26th July, 2023 at Serena Hotel.
During his speech, Deo Kayemba - the Chairperson of UMA noted the need to critically look at UMA’s budgetary proposals for the next financial year and highlight key areas of focus. “We should give special attention to trade competitiveness. How do we move to the neighboring markets?”
He expressed gratitude towards the Government for its support but also urged on the prioritization of local companies through Buy Uganda, Build Uganda.
He further emphasized the role played by the industrial sector in the growth of the economy.
Our CEO – Jonan Kisakye expressed delight in UIA’s participation in the Manufacturing Sector Budget Dialogue for the second year in a row.
He said that UIA takes UMA as a key partner noting that a lot of the business that we do as insurers is supported by the manufacturing sector, further emphasizing that the manufacturers are our big customers.
In his presentation titled Enabling businesses to Thrive & Survive, Jonan explained that the Insurance industry seeks to make businesses thrive by taking away the risks and giving them peace of mind. “We enable businesses to thrive but also to survive, because if there are issues and eventualities occur, then Insurance is there to support the business” he said.
He noted that the insurance industry has been evolving over a long period of time and that we are embracing change through technology in how we service our customers adding that the insurance industry is keen on creating impact. He also reported that we have expanded our policy benefits which is evident when one engages any of our members.
Jonan reported that the Insurance industry is growing at about 30%, the fastest growth rate within East African Region. He also said that the industry’s Claims Ratio stands at 43% meaning that 43% of the funds we collect are paid in claims while the bulk of the rest goes to management of expenses and honoring of taxes. He noted that Medical Insurance is the fastest growing controlling 20% in terms of Gross Written Premiums.
Jonan also noted that the UIA has a specific mandate just like UMA. “We advance member interests. We encourage close cooperation. We build on knowledge through research because we want to be relevant in terms of the solutions we offer you the manufacturers, but also the wider public.” He said that the association is responsible for influencing the enactment of favorable legislation for the industry and that we also facilitate exchange of business among our members.
He also spoke about the association’s growing membership. “Our membership has grown over the last couple number of years; we currently have 21 Non-Life Members, 8 Life Insurers, 4 Reinsurance Members and 8 Medical Insurers. We have also seen growth in Microinsurance which caters to those at the bottom of the pyramid.”
Hon. David Bahati, Minister of State for Trade, Industry and Cooperatives was the Chief Guest. In his remarks, he appreciated UMA for continuing to engage with the Government to build a strong industrial base for our country.
He reiterated Government’s commitment to its mission in the context of the dialogue, which is to move people from the poverty to a money economy.
“Out of the budget we appropriated, over UGX 1.2 Trillion was allocated to the Parish Development Model because we want to lift the subsistence households.
The second mission is to build an integrated & self-sustaining economy. We are committed to building 20 industrial parks in the next 5 years, and in this financial year, we have allocated funds to build 5, to facilitate the development of the manufacturing sector and to also have value addition for the products and ensure that what we are exporting has value.”
In his submission during the Panel Discussion, our CEO – Jonan Kisakye recognized the Ministry of Finance & Uganda Revenue Authority as UIA’s key partners because Government has supported us as insurers on the agricultural scheme with Ministry of Finance, but also on digitization & automation and we are benchmarking on URA to see how best we can digitize, but also how we can create an insurance literacy agenda.
He also complimented URA for the job well done in demystifying revenue and taxation.
Regarding the question of appreciation of insurance in view of the manufacturers, Jonan noted that one of the biggest issues has been information & statistics and that UIA has now embarked on a journey to generate statistics.
“If you ask me if manufacturers are appreciating insurance, I must respond with facts & statistics and in terms of the claims paid, in terms of uptake, in terms of how many are taking on Workers’ Compensation. That is what we have embarked on.”
“We must have credible information to be able to relate to the manufacturers. If you look at Workers’ Compensation, for example, as a requirement by law, I must be able to demonstrate to the manufacturers & to government if they are to support me in as far as implementation is concerned based on the cost of not complying.”
He added that we must collect information and validate. “These laws are put in place for the good of the country, and therefore, compliance must be a given.”
He explained that compliance must be backed up by a bit of information, and that this year alone, UIA is embarking on two very major research projects: one on Workers’ Compensation to demystify uptake, to breakdown injuries in the work place and to also relate the claims to the work place.
He also noted that the other issue we are embarking on is to negotiate with government for more support beyond what we are already getting. “When you look at our numbers, we are at UGX 1.4 Trillion as per 2022, the bulk of that money coming from formal businesses like UMA & the manufacturing sector.
If you compare our retail sales to the business sales, it is quite clear that the UGX 1.4 Trillion largely sits with manufacturing, agriculture and others.”
While explaining the role of insurance, Jonan noted insurance has played a key role in catalysing production through a number of policies like Medical Insurance, guaranteeing (insuring) loan facilities from banks.
He further implored the manufacturers to not only come to insurance when they need loan guarantees or to bring bad risks. This is crucial in maintaining a sustainable insurance business since we are in this together.