From the Desk of the CEO
As we wind down the year 2020, global communities remain firmly engaged in several Covid-19 pandemic prevention and recovery programmes aimed at minimising its socio-economic impact. The lockdown of global economies because of the pandemic resulted in the permanent shut down of thousands of businesses, millions of people losing their jobs, and over 1.4m global deaths.
Likewise, the South African economy suffered badly, despite the fiscal injection of R500bn aimed at cushioning it from the pandemic. According to the Quarterly Employment Statistics (QES) survey released by Statistics South Africa (Stats SA) in November 2020, formal sector obs decreased by 671 000 in the second quarter, year-on-year, a decrease of 6,6% in June 2020 compared with June 2019. The trade industry reported annual job losses of 180 000 employees in June 2020 compared with June 2019, followed by the business services industry with 140 000, the construction industry with 111 000 and the manufacturing industry with 100 000. Further losses in employment have continued into the third and fourth quarter of the year as small businesses struggle to maintain resilience. The impact on the economy is expected to impact on most business sectors, including the non-life insurance sector.
On a positive note, we are happy to announce that the SAIA Board approved several industry projects for the coming year which we expect will not only make a difference for our members and the industry at large, but for the broader environment in which the industry operates. More about the projects and initiatives can be found in this edition of the Bulletin. It is nearly three decades since the United Nations (UN) first initiated the global campaign of 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence (GBV), which runs from 25 November, the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, to International Human Rights Day on 10 December. Despite the groundswell of public support for this campaign and many others like it, South Africa is still, unfortunately, a long way from realising a society free of sexism, discrimination and violence against women and children. The 16 Days of Activism campaign affirms the need for all sectors of society to play their part in the fight against genderbased violence. Let us take hands, as individuals and as the corporate world, to continue to condemn, in the strongest terms, violence against women and children.
In closing, I would like to wish everyone a safe holiday season, and for those who will be driving to other provinces, please do exercise a lot of caution and patience on the road.
SAIA Chief Executive
Financial Intelligence Centre Project Update
The Deloitte consultation process is complete. The consulting firm presented its final findings to the larger Financial Intelligence Centre (FIC) working group (including representatives from the non-life insurance working group (NLIWG), FIC, National Treasury (NT), Financial Sector Conduct Authority (FSCA), and the Prudential Authority (PA) on 11 November 2020. The FIC Deloitte presentation has been made available to all SAIA members with an interest in the project.
Deloitte will provide the detailed Final Report to the NLIWG in Q1 2021, and once that engagement process is complete, the FIC Deloitte Final Report will be provided to the larger FIC working group. The FIC, however, did indicate to the larger working group that once it had gone through the detailed Final Report, there might be further engagements with the industry, or portions of it, on any issue(s) that require a further deep dive before making their final decision.
SAIA, the Financial Intermediaries Association of Southern Africa (FIA) and the South African Underwriting Managers Association (SAUMA), representing the NLIWG, appointed Deloitte to conduct the FIC agreed risk assessment to determine if there are money laundering and terrorism financing risks in the non-life insurance industry.
The agreement with FIC was that if the outcome of the assessment determined that these risks do exist, there would therefore be a need to include the industry in the FIC Act as Accountable and/or Reporting Institutions.
This article was written by Pamela Ramagaga, SAIA General Manager: Insurance Risks. For more information, please contact: Pamela@saia.co.za
The FSCA Publishes Research on Impact of Non-Traditional Data on the Provision of Financial Services
The Financial Sector Conduct Authority (FSCA) in November published its research report on the impact of Non-traditional (Alternative) Data on the provision of financial services in South Africa. Alternative data has grown in prominence in South Africa and is increasingly being used by fintech’s and traditional financial institutions in serving customers. Data points like social site postings, digital footprint, online transactions, photo albums, sentiment, and behavioural data, and group chats are increasingly being used to gauge consumer preferences and provide them with personalised offerings.
The aim of the report was to understand emerging practices around the use of alternative data to shed light on keys risks and benefits that financial institutions should consider as they scale their offerings. The report captures some of these emerging trends by identifying specific use cases being developed, and through a survey conducted on SA fintechs.
The regulator’s overall findings identified key benefits to consumers such as financial inclusion, personalisation, affordability, and enhanced customer experience. On the flipside, the report identified risks such as data privacy, data protection, fairness, and transparency as major challenges that would need to be addressed to ensure customers are sufficiently protected.
The report recommends that this can be done by ensuring greater levels of transparency and informed consent, data security, data privacy and prevention of misuse/biases.
To access the report, select below link: https://www.fsca.co.za/Documents/FSCA%20Non-Traditional%20Data%20Research%20Report%202020.pdf
The FSCA is a member of the Intergovernmental Fintech Working Group (IFWG). The IFWG was established in 2016 with the objective to create a forum for regulators to gain deeper insights into fintech innovation in order to regulate and foster responsible innovation to help ensure the continued efficient functioning of financial markets and financial stability and the safeguarding of customers’ interests. Other members of the IFWG are, the Financial Intelligence Centre (FIC), the National Credit Regulator (NCR), Competition Commission, the National Treasury, South African Revenue Service.
This article was written by Pamela Ramagaga, SAIA General Manager: Insurance Risks. For more information, please contact: Pamela@saia.co.za
SAIA Board Approves 2021 BACSA Funding
Over many years, the South African Insurance Association (SAIA) has been a valued donor to Business Against Crime South Africa (BACSA) to support their crime combating work in South Africa.
The SAIA Board has approved the funding of BACSA for the year 2021. SAIA recognises that BACSA is a strategic vehicle in combating crime in South Africa and is aligned to the SAIA crime combating strategic pillar.
In 2018, SAIA and the Business Leadership South Africa (BLSA) identified the opportunity that lies in making BACSA a strategic division of the BLSA given the common platforms of stakeholder engagements and therefore leverage on their respective areas of influence to further augment the work done by BACSA in combating crime. As combating crime is one of BLSA’s strategic pillars as well, the marriage made strategic sense.
Therefore, the BACSA strategic role was further augmented with BACSA now being a part of the BLSA, which provides further opportunity for the non-life insurance industry to engage strategically with relevant stakeholders, most critically the government, to combat crime in South Africa.
Over the years, through the partnership between BACSA and SAIA, SAIA has seen the implementation of milestone legislation through BACSA compelling vehicle manufacturers and importers to have microdots on new vehicles, and the implementation of the Second-Hand Goods Act no.6 of 2009. BACSA has facilitated the creation of the Microdot Technology SABS Standards and monitors its implementation in SAPS including providing training SAPS staff on how to use the microdot technology to discover stolen or hijacked property.
There are many other initiatives that BACSA is involved in within the numerous structures of government institutions responsible for combating crime in South Africa. This includes many hours of engagement at all the necessary institutional engagements, including providing training, guidance, and influence in these institutions for the betterment of society against crime in South Africa.
This article was written by Pamela Ramagaga, SAIA General Manager: Insurance Risks. For more information, please contact: Pamela@saia.co.za
In support of the transformation objectives as approved by the SAIA Board, SAIA is coordinating the implementation of the priority industry initiatives and facilitating relevant engagements with members.
Below is an update on the SAIA’s Transformation focus areas for 2020.
Industry Data Collation
As part of the industry transformation priorities, SAIA had contracted an external service provider to assist with the development of the reporting portal that would be used to collate industry transformation data. SAIA is currently in the process of testing the portal for its functionality before it can be signed off and rolled out to members to utilize for reporting purposes.
It is envisaged that the testing should be completed before the end of the year and members will be invited to submit the first required data via portal during the first quarter of 2021.
Review of the Financial Sector Code (FSC)
The review process is still in progress, with some of the sub-committees having completed the negotiations, while others are still in progress. It has been decided that the review will now be elevated to the Financial Sector Transformation Council’s Reporting Working Committee (RWC,) in order to accelerate the process.
To date, SAIA was able to submit its position paper for the review of the Access Element, which has since been tabled and approved by the RWC. As an industry, SAIA hosted an industry workshop to review the current Access Standards/Guidance Note in line with the approved amendments to the element. Members will be invited to the follow-up workshop to finalise the Guidance Note before submission to the RWC for approval. Other elements are yet to be submitted and tabled at the RWC.
Enterprise and Supplier Development “ESD” (incl. Preferential Procurement) Initiatives
SAIA continues to see ESD as a key sector element in the FSC and is therefore looking at a relevant industry initiative that could be implemented to accelerate transformation through the industry supply chain. In 2020, SAIA has gone through the engagement process of developing the industry’s Treating Suppliers Fairly (TSF) Framework, which is intended to formalize and guide members when engaging with industry suppliers. The document that outlines the principles to be adopted has been tabled and approved by the SAIA Board, with the intention of reducing its content into an insert to be included in the SAIA Code of Conduct. Other activities that relate to the improvement of the industry’s interaction with its service providers include the SAIA’s submission to the review of the FSC’s Preferential Procurement and ESD Element and continuous engagements with service providers directly through their industry Associations or through the relevant SAIA forums.
SAIA also conducted an industry workshop on the inclusion of the Broker Commission in the Preferential Procurement scorecard as of December 2020.
A submission of a Guidance Note has been submitted for approval by the RWC, in order to provide clarity for the measured entities for the purposes of their B-BBEE verification process.
Industry Skills Gap (Management Control and Skills Development)
The challenges of an industry skills gap are increasingly becoming of serious concern with the industry experiencing an aging workforce and not attracting/developing enough new talent. SAIA views skills development as a key component in securing the sustainability of the industry and is therefore engaging with stakeholders such as InSeta and the IISA to identify strategic skills development opportunities for the industry.
In 2020, the industry established the subcommittee that was dedicated toward the identification of the industry priority/scares skills and collation of the body of industry knowledge. SAIA is happy to announce the launching of the two textbooks by Wits University that took place on the 25th of November 2020, as part of the efforts to safeguard the future of the industry through the promotion of skills development and transfer.
SAIA was also involved in the financial sector task team that engaged the Department of Employment and Labour (DoEL) on its proposal to set sector-specific Employment Equity Target, once its Amended EE Bill has been approved by parliament. The process required the sector to provide the DoEL with its proposed EE targets for the next 5 years. SAIA, together with ASISA and BASA, submitted the sector position paper on the targets for the three management levels (middle, senior and top) to the DoEL, which has since been discussed with the DoEL, and accepted for consideration by the DoEL.
The sector was since requested to submit a similar position paper on the junior and people with disability targets, which has been submitted to the DoEL on the 30th of November 2020. SAIA will host an industry workshop at the beginning of 2021 to provide members with feedback on the outcomes of the engagements with the DoEL and the proposed targets for the sector.
The SAIA Consumer Education Fund has remained one of the key projects to drive the industry’s transformation objectives. In 2020, SAIA engaged members on the review of the SAIA Consumer Education strategy with the following outcomes having been approved by the SAIA Board:
- Securing your property for improved financial well-being (Risk Management), and
- Engaging with the non-life insurance industry (Products & Services).
- Young Adults – Financial Literacy and introduction to non-life insurance industry.
- South African Households – Financial Risk Management through non-life insurance products and Policy Management.
- SMME’s – Business Risk Management and introduction to non-life insurance industry.
- Sector Collaborations – Identification of suitable partnerships with relevant stakeholders within the financial services sector.
SAIA members are encouraged to continue to support the Consumer Education initiatives by pledging their contributions into the SAIA Consumer Fund and/or aligning members’ own initiatives with the industry strategic objectives.
This article was written by Themba Palagangwe, SAIA GM Governance and Transformation For more information, please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org or Zanele Gigaba, Transformation Manager at email@example.com.
Update – Notice to all IGF Stakeholders
We confirm that IGF ceased operations on 31 March 2019 and is currently winding-up. All active, valid guarantees on this date were cancelled, with no run-off, in terms of a Regulatory dispensation. However, these active, valid guarantees are all subject to a prescription period of three years by operation of law in terms of the statutory guarantee wording, on claims that arose prior to the termination of these guarantees. This three-year prescription period remains in place uninterrupted until 31 March 2022, when liability for any potential claim under all those guarantees that were terminated on 31 March 2019 officially prescribes.
Withdrawal of IGF’s insurance licence with effect from 24 August 2020
Following discussions between IGF, the Prudential Authority (PA) and the Financial Sector Conduct Authority during this year, the Authorities have withdrawn IGF’s (non-life) insurance licence in terms of section 29(1)(b)(iii) of the Insurance Act 2017, read section 122 of the Financial Sector Regulation Act 2017, with effect from 24 August 2020, instead of converting IGF's licence in terms of the provisions of the Insurance Act. The withdrawal of IGF’s insurance licence does not affect the prescription period outlined above.
The conditions that attach to the withdrawal of IGF's insurance licence include:
- IGF's Board takes responsibility for the implementation and management of a relevant claims handling process, in respect of any claims notified during the prescription period.
- To this end, a Claims Board Committee has been constituted which will operate in terms of IGF Board-approved Terms of Reference.
- IGF submits to the PA a bi-annual report confirming any claims notified during the reporting period, the status of those claims at the end of the reporting period and the status of the IGF assets at the end of the period. The first such report is due on 31 January 2021, for the six-month period ending 31 December 2020.
- IGF must review all company documentation to remove the word “insurance” or any derivatives thereof so as not to give the impression to the general public that IGF is an operational non-life insurer and communicate all changes made in this regard to the PA by 24 November 2020.
Process for the return of collateral security
The process of returning collateral security held by IGF is underway and progressing. IGF aims to have returned all collateral security by the time liability under the last guarantees prescribes on 31 March 2022, and the company can be finally wound-up.
The process encompasses:
- Returning old collateral security that was required to issue IGF guarantees in the past, which guarantees are not subject to the three-year prescription period ending 31 March 2022, i.e. liability for claims under the relevant guarantee has already prescribed.
- Returning current collateral security that was required to issue IGF guarantees in the past, which guarantees are still subject to the 3-year prescription period ending 31 March 2022, BUT where the necessary indemnifications of IGF have been received from the insurers and the relevant intermediary concerned, as well as the requisite letter of confirmation from the intermediary’s auditor confirming that there are no outstanding premiums due to the insurer/s up to and including 31 March 2019.
We will keep IGF stakeholders informed of any further developments.
This article was written by Charles Hitchcock SAIA Chief Operations Officer. For more information, please contact: Charles@saia.co.za.
INSETA Welcomes its New Chief Executive Officer
On behalf of the INSETA Board, I am pleased to announce the appointment of Ms Gugu Mkhize as our new Chief Executive Officer (CEO) starting from 01 December 2020 until 1 December 2025. Ms Mkhize is no stranger to the Seta environment and the Public sector in general. Some of the key leadership roles she previously held include Executive: Corporate Services (National Home Builders Regulatory Council), Chief Executive Officer (Excelle International Pty Ltd), Executive Manager: Corporate Services (Mining Qualifications Authority), Senior Manager: Corporate Services (Johannesburg Social Housing Company) and Senior Corporate Manager (KZN Growth Fund Managers).
It is out of these top executive positions that she brings a wealth of experience and knowledge in strategic leadership, corporate governance, human capital, strategies and policies development, stakeholder relations, facilities and property management, strategic business planning and organisational performance.
She holds various qualifications such as a Master of Business Administration (MBA) Degree from Regent Business School, a Bachelor of Arts Honours from the University of KwaZulu- Natal (UKZN), a Bachelor of Arts Degree from the University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN), and various other qualifications in different streams, that will enable her to successfully execute her responsibility to this institution.
Ms Mkhize is a seasoned business leader with expertise amassed through working in various fields namely, construction and home building regulation, project financing, skills development and education, project management and corporate consulting.
Out of her more than two decades of experience, she has held several executive and leadership roles for 12 consecutive years. This afforded her the opportunity to deal with multiple stakeholders across different levels of the organisations. She is highly driven to make a tangible difference and positively impacting the current and future generations of our country.
The Accounting Authority has full trust in Ms Mkhize, knowing that she will take the INSETA to greater heights and ensure that the INSETA is on the right trajectory for further growth and transformation within the insurance industry.
This article was written by Mr Sihle Ngubane, INSETA Chairperson. For more information, please contact: Saloshnee Govender, INSETA PR & Marketing Manager: firstname.lastname@example.org.
What about cover for completed infrastructure projects?
As our region is on a drive for the construction of major infrastructure projects, we have only been offering cover for the work during the erection or construction period. However, what happens once the infrastructure has been completed? Most owners and operators leave them to the elements, little aware that there is an engineering policy available that is tailored specifically to these projects. The reason is mainly that such projects are designed to withstand the elements and more importantly our region is very forgiving when it comes to natural catastrophes. Therefore, major damage to the infrastructure is very rare in our region. The product often overlooked under the engineering bouquet of insurance products is Civil Engineering Completed Risks (CECR) policy. While this policy is mostly offered on a namedperils basis, all risk cover may also be considered. This product is designed to provide cover on an annual basis for operational installations such as pipelines, roads, runways, tunnels, canals, dams, harbours, reservoirs, weirs and bridges. The CECR policy can be taken out by owners or operators of infrastructure including private contractors, government or state entities, or Public Private Partnerships (PPPs).
In these types of structures, the fire risk is negligible therefore issuing the standard fire policy would be unsuitable without adding multiple additional policy extensions in order to make the cover offered adequate. The civil structures are at risk of natural hazards in connection with the operation and use of these facilities. Typical exposures for the structures include lightning, earthquakes, flooding and related water damage, impact, windstorms and fire to a lesser extent amongst others.
The cover can be typically extended to include extensions such as loss of profits, debris removal, expediting costs and machinery breakdown, etc.
What are the important aspects to be considered?
Policyholders need to consider multiple factors prior to deciding to purchase this cover and these include:
- The values of the insured properties need to be reviewed on an annual basis to account for inflationary costs.
- The normal maintenance activities need to continue as the CECR policy is not a replacement for these essential activities.
- The age and condition of the infrastructure are critical when determining the terms and conditions of the policy.
- The policy will only cover material damage to the insured items and Loss of Profits should this cover be requested.
What advantages are offered by the cover?
This product is beneficial to operators involved in major infrastructure operations and maintenance and advantages include:
- Coverage is provided against extreme hazards for which the operator is not responsible.
- This cover can save the operator from paying heavy repair costs after major damages to their infrastructure.
- The policy can reduce the loss of income to the operator when the damage has occurred to the infrastructure.
Most of the countries in our region have projected that the construction of critical infrastructure will be the catalyst to rescue their economies. This is also true for the South African economy with our government trying to raise billions from the private sector to get projects off the ground. The construction sector’s contribution to South Africa’s GDP is projected to increase by 3.5% in 2021. This is after the subdued growth experienced during 2020 due to the Covid-19 lockdown, a slowdown in GDP growth, and other economic factors. While there are risks that need to be overcome including unavailability of capital and lack of experienced contractors on the ground to execute the work there is certainly light at the end of the tunnel for our industry. Getting the infrastructure projects off the ground will inject much needed economic activity and contribute towards reviving our economy.
This article was written by Xolile Kahla, on behalf of the South African Association of Engineering Insurers (SAAEI), a division of SAIA. For more information, please contact: email@example.com
Be Vigilant, Don’t Give Away Too Much this Holiday Season
The December holiday period is generally a time when most businesses close, enabling families to regroup and celebrate the holidays as a unit and engage in family activities. This is a time most families use to go away, leaving their homes in the major met ros, and retreating to holiday destinations that will help them reflect and reset their minds. However, the contrary is true for crime in South Africa. Generally, criminal activities like hijackings, robberies and house breakings tend to reach a peak during this time of the year.
The South African Insurance Association (SAIA) would like to encourage the public and policyholders to be extra vigilant and take due care in all your activities for your safety and that of others. “Securing your assets through adequate insurance cover is something within our control and is your safety net should an insured event occur. As you prepare to go on holiday and are excited to meet friends and family members, bear in mind that there could be someone waiting to take advantage of your unoccupied property and help themselves to your hard-earned belongings. It is vital that you ensure that your belongings are protected from any possible physical risks or exposures before you go on holiday,” says Susan Walls, Insurance Technical Advisor at SAIA.
Walls adds that consumers can achieve this by speaking to their broker or insurer who can assist in identifying any possible short-falls and how you can avoid them. Pamela Ramagaga, GM: Insurance Risks says we rarely check the contents of our wallets and purses or handbags before we go on holiday. “If we did, one would be amazed at the amount of personal information contained in them that should not really be in the wallet or hand-bag. When going on holiday, always ensure that your wallet only has carefully considered contents. Carry only those bank cards you will need to use. Avoid carrying identity documents and passports if you are not crossing the border. A good form of identity is your valid driver’s licence or the new ID card.
“Exercise extra care when it comes to electronic or online purchases, as this is where a great deal of identity theft normally takes place, both online and in store. Also, closely monitor your bank accounts and credit card activity throughout the holiday period just in case you pick up an anomaly. Ensure that the websites you log into are secure websites and always log off after completing your purchase” says Ramagaga.
Ramagaga further explains that there is an increasing number of property owners who earn an additional income through letting out rooms, or their entire flat or home during the holiday season for commercial gain. “It is vital that they engage their insurer or broker before embarking on this exercise to understand the risks and consider appropriate action in the form of additional cover or a change of insurance cover to a hospitality-type or commercial-type of cover.
“Remember that letting rooms in your property considerably increases your risk of loss or damage, and you are exposed to liability claims from paying guests or visiting third parties. However, be conscious of the fact that you are not automatically responsible for injuries to people living in your house, and you shouldn’t accept blame before discussing the matter with your broker or insurer,” she concludes.
For more information, please contact Pamela Ramagaga, GM: Insurance Risks at SAIA at firstname.lastname@example.org.
SAIA Urges all Drivers to Maintain Sobriety on the Roads
The South African Insurance Association (SAIA) is urging all drivers and road users to exercise restraint and avoid drinking and driving during this November/December holiday and festive season to further minimise fatalities on South African roads.
According to the Road Traffic Management Corporation (RTMC), research shows that drunk driving accounts for 27.1% of fatal crashes in the country and is estimated to cost the local economy R18.2 billion annually. The research also highlighted that 55% of fatal crashes happened at night and about three out of five (5) happened over a weekend.
Ms. Viviene Pearson, the SAIA CEO, says “Road safety is a major challenge in South Africa – one that requires a multisectoral, multigovernmental approach that is evidence-based to reduce this increasing burden. An important aspect of this approach is that humans make mistakes, but these mistakes do not, and should not, result in a fatality or a serious injury on the road.”
Ms. Pearson, says all road users must take caution as we approach the festive season period, to curb fatalities on the road by planning their road trips ahead of time, ensuring that their vehicle is in a good (roadworthy) condition to travel long distances, as well as getting enough rest or sleep before embarking on the journey. However, if not traveling far, but know that you will have dinner with drinks, do not drive. Leave your car at home and call an e-hailing service or use an option that may be included in some insurance policies where you can access a “drive me home” service after an event.
“Preparation minimises doubts and surprises - avoid the pressure and guilt as a result of half thought through decisions and their consequences such as accidents, arrests, bail, car towing or impound costs, court costs, legal fees, higher insurance premiums or worse lose your job because of a drunk driving record and this is just the beginning of a long list.”
SAIA advises policyholders to utilise “drive home services” if offered as part of their policy cover. This is a value add offered by most SAIA members. This service can be booked well in advance, ensuring that you and your car get home safely. There are also e-hailing services available as an option should you not be able to drive.
“We urge all road users to obey traffic laws and to be vigilant on the roads this festive season to ensure their safety, their families’, and that of other road users. We wish all road users a safe and happy holiday,” said Ms. Pearson.
SAIA advises road users to make sure that they have adequate insurance cover and shares the following tips to ensure road users travel safely:
- Make certain that your insurance premiums are up to date.
- Keep your policy number and 24hr road assistance number handy in case of an emergency (insurers usually provide you a sticker to place on your drive side).
- Travel during the day and rest in between trips at night.
- Do not drink and drive.
- Do not text or talk on your cell phone while driving.
- Keep a safe driving distance.
- Keep to the road speed limits, remember ‘’Speed Kills’.’
- Be on the lookout for pedestrians or obstacles on the road.
- Remember to advise your insurance company if you are travelling outside of South Africa.
- Make certain that your vehicle is roadworthy, and tyres are in good condition.
- Check if your spare wheel is in good condition and that you have a wheel-spanner and jack.
- Check if your wipers are in good working order.
- Rest after every two hours of driving or have an alternative driver to share the driving burden.
For more information, please contact Kwanele Sibanda, SAIA Manager: Corporate Affairs at Kwanele@saia.co.za.