THE word insurance, from a Zimbabwean perspective, normally sends shivers down the spines of many, who still recollect some grim memories of the sad chapter of the 2008 economic meltdown.
GUEST OPINION: PETER MAKWANYA
People still doubt whether the private sector still has a role to play in insuring their property.
The private sector has a role to play and can venture into the unknown territory of climate protection.
Investors and the cross-section of the business sector need to communicate the vital information on the need to protect the assets they are investing in, as well as those projects that that have a strong bearing on the people’s livelihoods.
The majority of Africans, Zimbabweans included, are reeling under the effects of energy poverty in the presence of very vital, but scarce resources.
They are also faced with uncertainties of the grim effects of climate change and destruction.
Therefore, how do those insurance companies communicate the provision of risk management and guidance to a number of energy-producing companies and their subsidiaries?
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People need to be convinced that insurance can still play a vital role, as it used to do, with the provision of financial protection after a disaster.
Local farmers still need to be assisted in recovering some of the crops or costs they would have incurred due to climate-induced drought.
After disasters strike, the private sector, through its insurance arms, needs to help businesses recover from the aftermath of extreme weather events.
In Zimbabwe, at national level, the government needs to invest in insurance schemes that enable people to respond sustainably to floods or droughts, the major scourges that are synonymous with the African continent.
Climate change is going to pose the greatest risks to businesses due to its unpredictable impact.
Issues of businesses’ risk and resilience should be communicated appropriately to all stakeholders.
The insurance gaps that were created in the past by insurance companies in this country, should be communicated in such a way that the beneficiaries no longer associate the insurance sector with the monster they once imagined it was.
Insurance companies need to lead the way and play a pivotal role in helping people to recover, as well as reducing the impact of global warming.
There is need for insurance companies to invest in risk communication and awareness in terms of climate protection so that prospective beneficiaries are sufficiently conscientised in terms of climate protection.
Insurance companies should also explore sustainable land uses in order to prevent land degradation and carbon emissions that are contributing enormously to global warming.
A new wave of climate insurable awareness, which can assist present and prospective clients in proficiently articulating risk management skills should dominate the insurance industry’s discourse.
This would empower people with risk management skills that will sufficiently prevent unsustainable practices and environmental damage.
Some insurance companies should also lead the way in demonstrating that they are serious about reducing their own carbon footprints. Without insurance, properties and businesses cannot function, and insurance policies that are aimed at protecting those engaged in green energy technologies need to be revitalised.
With green commercial buildings the way to go, insurance companies are also expected to move in that direction of offering green commercial building insurance policies.
Peter Makwanya is a climate change communicator. He writes in his capacity and can be contacted on: [email protected]