Insurance association decries shortage of actuarial experts

Dar es Salaam. The Association of Tanzania Insurers (ATI) has complained of a shortage of local actuarial experts, a situation caused by high cost of obtaining international certification.

Actuarial experts are responsible for analysing the industry trend to calculate risks, premiums and design new products for insurers.

Insurance firms mostly use foreign experts, but new regulations require them to use local independent actuaries.

“We don’t have a local certified independent actuarial specialist in Tanzania…The few experts are already employed by various companies,” said ATI chairman, Mr Khamis Suleiman.

He said many insurance companies in the country that have relationships with international insurance companies did not see the importance of having a local actuarial department, but the new rules force them to use the local independent experts.

“The new rules for the management of the insurance sector force all companies to have an actuarial department and use independent experts who will have the task of giving opinions on the conduct of the company and how the customers can be served,” said Mr Suleiman.

As a solution to the challenge, The Muhanna Foundation has now introduced an examination centre in Tanzania in an attempt to reduce the cost of seeking international accreditation.

The organisation’s executive director Ibrahim Muhanna who is also a member of the actuaries, said certification takes up to seven years and the easiest part for a Tanzanian to sit for the exams was in South Africa or England.