BAKU, Azerbaijan, March 30
By Yusif Aghayev – Trend:
Some slowdown in business activity caused by the need to take urgent measures to fight the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) can certainly affect the country's insurance market, Chairman of the board of the Azerbaijan Insurers Association (AIA) Azer Aliyev told Trend.
“Most obviously, at first, the indicators for collecting premiums will decrease. In general, in the conditions of certain critical situations arising in the economic space, the insurance sector suffers first of all. This is because the insurance costs fall primarily under the sequestration as expenses not related to the satisfaction of primary and urgent needs,” Aliyev noted.
“However, this is not a reason to give up. It is during this period, when many, observing the special quarantine regime, are in isolation, that the insurance community must promptly prepare a plan for switching to a remote mode of operations. Those challenges that face society in the context of the spread of the coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19), cause concern about tomorrow, the well-being of their and their loved ones,” the chairman said.
Aliyev noted that under these conditions, the activities of insurance companies should be aimed at creating new insurance products that can meet the needs of customers in new changed conditions, as well as expanding online sales, adding that right now it’s important to convey a message to the public, which says: "Only with insurance you can protect yourself from existing risks and confidently look to the future".
“Digitalization in the Azerbaijani insurance sector is at the level that such types of compulsory insurance as compulsory motor third-party liability insurance (OSAGO) and insurance against industrial accidents and occupational diseases are already carried out in electronic format, without paper documentation. The electronic platform of many insurance companies allows the issuance of insurance contracts for voluntary types. So, travel insurance has long been issued in many companies in this format,” said the chairman.
According to Underwriting Director in Azerbaijan’s AtaSigorta insurance company Nigar Ibrahimova, the company switched to issuing insurance certificates for comprehensive motor vehicle insurance (CASCO) in electronic format. In trun, Gala Sigorta insurance company launched a mobile application on compulsory insurance.
“We are not making bright plans, but we are optimistic about the future! I am sure that in this difficult situation, the entire insurance community of Azerbaijan will be able to unite and demonstrate solidarity with the people, Aliyev concluded.