WINDHOEK - The Namibia National Reinsurance Corporation (NamibRe) yesterday declared a dividend of N$6.15 million for the financial year ended March 31, 2018. This dividend represents 20 percent of the corporation’s net profit after tax and is a 23 percent increase from the previous year’s dividends of N$5 million. This is also the fifth consecutive year that NamibRe has declared dividends to its shareholder, which is the government.
“I am further delighted to note that the cheque amount I received in 2015 has more than tripled from N$2 million to over N$6 million in 2019. This brings the total amount in dividends received from NamibRe in the past five years to over sixteen million (N$16.65 million),” said Deputy Finance Minister, Natangue Ithete, at the handover ceremony.
“In the midst of economic challenges and the on-going court battle whereby some members of the industry challenged the NamibRe Act, NamibRe has managed to stay true to its mandate and bring returns for the shareholder. For this and more, we are indeed proud of NamibRe because you heed our calls to employ restraints in expenditure and minimise reliance on government funding as this is unsustainable. I am repeating and emphasising this call to all government agencies, ministries and public enterprises that government can no longer afford bailouts,” Ithete stated.
Ithete added that it is time for public enterprises to start living up to their mandates and deliver on their promises of providing good quality public service, pay dividends, and increase shareholder value and wealth. “Now is indeed the time for PEs to drive the economy by contributing to GDP, fiscus and job creation through taxes and dividends … It’s not economically sound for one to own and operate a business for 25 years or more without getting returns, the same applies to government. Public enterprises were not established to be cost-liabilities with constant bailouts; they were created for times such as this, to assist government in growing our economy and provide reliable and affordable services to industry and the public at large. Therefore, public enterprises should emulate the good example provided by NamibRe,” Ithete stated.
Ithete further highlighted that apart from paying its dividend yearly, NamibRe is actually way ahead of fulfilling its main objective, which is to minimise capital outflow from the insurance industry and to develop the reinsurance industry by promoting the participation of all Namibians.
NamibRe is well represented at industry bodies as its managing director, Patty Karuaihe-Martins, is the chairperson of the Organisation for Eastern and Southern African Insurers (OESAI) as well as an executive member of the Africa Insurance Organisation (AIO).
NamibRe is one of many reinsurance companies in Africa and the world. Similarly, European countries such as Germany, Switzerland, as well as Ghana, Kenya, Zimbabwe, Ethiopia in Africa also have national insurance and reinsurance companies.
Ithete noted that reinsurance companies were created mainly for two purposes, namely to minimise capital outflow from the insurance industry and develop the local insurance industries to enhance the participation of its people. “Indeed, funds from the insurance and reinsurance industry have an important role to play in local economic development,” he said.
“What this shows is that the Namibian government, like many other governments in both developed and developing countries, by enacting the NamibRe Act and establishing NamibRe did so in order to promote economic development. Indeed, big reinsurance companies such as MunichRe and Swiss Re were created by their governments and today they are some of the biggest reinsurance companies in the world,” said Ithete.
The deputy minister continued that with the second highest insurance penetration rates in Africa at 7.2 percent, Namibia’s insurance should foster cooperation with neighboring countries such as South Africa, to develop local as well as the African financial sector and make it more sophisticated and resilient.
2019-07-31 07:08:10 21 days ago