The United Nations Development Programme( UNDP) has launched Ghana’s Insurance & Risk Finance Facility project to protect the poor and vulnerable in Accra from the impacts of severe natural disasters.
The project will facilitate and make risk insurance & financing easily accessible to help and build a resilient society for Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) achievement.
The work is embedded within a comprehensive technical assistance programme implemented by UNDP to support governments and industry with stakeholder engagement, institutional and government reforms, and the integration of risk finance into government decision-making.
It is estimated that the potential market for inclusive insurance alone is at least four billion people, representing a protection gap of quite staggering proportions. According to UNDP, increasing affordable access to insurance and risk financing has a critical role to play in delivering the SDGs and reducing the impact of weather/climate-induced disasters on development.
Sukhrob Khoshmukhamedov, UNDP Ghana Deputy Resident Representative, addressing the meeting, said UNDP has been at the forefront of providing technical and financial support in Disaster Risk Reduction since 2005.
According to Mr Khoshmukhamedov, the natural disasters have exposed the vulnerability of the continent, and “I believe insurance and risk finance is one of the tools available to us in supporting society to Build Back Better”.
Having supported the strengthening of community resilience through Early warning systems as well as disaster risk management, from prevention to risk reduction, preparedness, response, and recovery; Mr Sukhrob Khoshmukhamedov stated that rapidly expanding settlements where vulnerable populations often lack the basic essentials is another important problem facing the population. Hence, he said it’s important to collaborate across the public and private sector and the Global South and Global North, to find ways to close the protection gap and develop climate disaster risks insurance solutions that contribute to building resilience and contribute to national climate adaptation strategies.
On her part, Charlotte Norman, delivered a speech on behalf of the Director General, NADMO, Hon. Eric Nana Agyemang Prempeh, noted that the insurance project will go a long way to help because it is seen as an adaptation measure against climate change and disaster risk reduction measures. “NADMO is ever ready to render full support to this project and give it all the needed attention and priority it deserves,” she stated.
The Director of climate change adaptation and disaster risk, at the National Disaster Management Organization (NADMO), Charlotte Norman, revealed that there are ongoing projects in the country to build resilience against flooding which is a major natural disaster that mostly poses danger to inhabitants of the Greater Accra Region.
“We know that while disaster risks are on the increase, there is a huge protection gap in developing countries, where less than five per cent (5%) of disaster losses are covered by insurance, versus 50 per cent (50%) in high-income countries. Protection gaps also exist beyond disaster loss.
“Financial exclusion, the absence of legislation for mutual and cooperative insurance in developing countries, and a wide range of demand and supply issues contribute to this disparity and the subsequently diminished resilience of most vulnerable communities.”Charlotte Norman
UNDP Committed to Working with Partners
Hon. Eric Nana Agyemang noted that UNDP is committed to working with partners in Ghana and beyond to mobilize additional financing and resources to support the implementation of Ghana’s own coordinated disaster prevention, mitigation and response plan to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and other agreed global frameworks for Disaster Risk Reduction.
The outcome of the workshop is expected to lead to active project implementation with all key stakeholders to create the enabling environment for inclusive insurance and risk financing as well as integrate insurance into urban flood interventions and the development frameworks in Ghana.
Physical Impacts of Climate Change
Hermann Rothert, Head of Sustainability in Allianz Insurance, noted that the physical impacts of climate change are directly impacting people and their livelihoods around the world and Ghana is not being spared from these impacts. He disclosed that Africa has been hit by over 130 extreme weather events.
“Hence, it is important to collaborate across the public and private sector and the Global South and Global North, to find ways to close the protection gap and develop climate disaster risks insurance solutions that contribute to building resilience and contribute to national climate adaptation strategies.
“For Allianz, sustainability, including climate adaptation is high on the agenda. As a global insurer, we can provide the expertise and capacity to develop solutions to address the most important risks of climate change.”Hermann Rothert