Aliyu Abdulhameed

The Nigeria Incentive-Based Risk Sharing System for Agricultural Lending (NIRSAL) has developed a new insurance product to mitigate the impact and losses of agricultural yields and market price risks for smallholder farmers.

A statement signed by Ms Anne Ihugba, Head, Corporate Communications of NIRSAL in Abuja on Sunday, said the new insurance product is known as the NIRSAL Comprehensive Index Insurance (NCII).

She said the insurance product would safeguard farmers against risks along the agricultural value chain.

Ihugba noted that the NCII would also address the fundamental risks associated with possible production shortfalls and the uncertainties of the marketplace.

She said the deployment of the insurance product would commence immediately with a pilot phase as part of the organisation’s operation in the CBN’s Anchor Borrowers Programme in the 2018 wet season farming.

According to her, while the cover provided by previous insurance product is limited to yields, the new insurance product is a combination of yields, price index and life insurance.

Ihugba in the statement, quoted the Managing Director of NIRSAL, Mr Aliyu Abdulhameed, as saying that the new insurance product was a demonstration to NIRSAL’s focus toward expanding the frontiers of innovation in the agriculture sector.

“At NIRSAL, our focus is to make positive impact at key points of the agricultural value chains that can translate to significantly higher and sustained productivity, food security for the country.

“The new insurance product, an innovative form of revenue insurance is unique in Africa. It is also the first of such product to be achieved without government subsidies on the premium.

“The product is especially targeted at smallholder farmers, who are the most vulnerable segment in the agriculture sector and the Nigerian population as a whole.

“Leveraging on its 30 million dollars insurance facility, NIRSAL’s goal is to expand insurance products and coverage on agricultural lending across the entire value chain by growing coverage from about 0.5m to 3.8m primary producers,’’ Abdulhameed said.

He explained that NCII was developed by the Corporation in conjunction with key partners including National Insurance Commission (NAICOM), National Agricultural Insurance Corporation (NAIC) and members of the consortium including Axa Mansard, IGI, Leadway, Royal Exchange and Pula Advisors.

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