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November 16, 2011

Company introduces agriculture insurance in Swaziland

by Sifiso Sibandze

Upcoming Swaziland short term insurer, Lidwala Insurance Company has introduced an Agricultural Insurance Package targeted at both the small and large commercial farmer.

The package consists of three different policies; Livestock Comprehensive Policy, Sugar Cane Protection Policy and Farm Comprehensive Policy covers.

This was disclosed by Lidwala’s acting Marketing and Claims Manager Octavia Kunene. Kunene said the introduction of this package was along the company’s main thrust to continuously drive growth by diversifying its portfolio through the introduction of tailor-made and customer relevant products. Lidwala Insurance Company is the first company in the country to come up with such an insurance policy.

This will come as good news to commercial farmers as they had been calling for such products from the insurance industry.

According to Kunene, the livestock comprehensive policy covers includes all kinds of domestic animals ranging from cattle, sheep, goats and chickens among others. "The policy comprises of fire, diseases and transit sections. Regarding fire, it covers loss of an animal as a result of perils such as fire, lightning, explosion, electrocution, malicious damage and riot," she explained.

She said the disease aspect of the policy is specifically designed for those who wish to cover loss of their cattle against specific diseases but excluding pandemics such as foot and mouth and anthrax, while the transit section covers loss or injury to the insured animals while on transit, including theft.

"The Sugar Cane Protection Policy is specifically structured and tailor made for sugar cane growers who may be small or large scale commercial farmers," she said, adding that this policy has an allied perils section that covers loss or damage to cane as a result of fire, malicious damage and riot.

In addition Kunene said the company has in conjunction with its re-insurers arranged for hail damage cover which would be optional should the client specifically wish to cover the sugar cane against this peril.

Kunene said the farm comprehensive policy was tailor-made for farmers who were into diversified farming and consists of personal insurance, farming insurance and motor combined insurance sections.

"The personal insurance section caters for the farmer’s private dwellings (buildings) and household contents at the farm, risks, personal accident and personal liability cover," she explained.

Moreover, the farming insurance section covers the business operations on the farm and this ranges from crop insurance such as vegetables, tomatoes, paprika, wheat and sorghum with an option for hail damage cover.

"The insurer can insure against buildings, money robbery, transit among others," she said.

Regarding the Motor Combined Section, Kunene said it covered the farmer’s vehicles and these could range from private, commercial vehicles, buses, motorcycles, trailers and special types that constitute equipment such as combine harvesters, tractors among others. The cover ranges from comprehensive, full third party fire and theft and full third party only.

Kunene indicated that the agricultural products currently being rolled out by Lidwala Insurance Company were specifically in terms of the perils covered by the policies at hand and clients were free to give them as collateral against funding that may be provided by local financial institutions.

Looking into the future, Kunene said the company was already working on consolidating the above products by structuring weather index related insurance that will cover risks such as drought.

Swazi Times

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