Fiji Sun

Insurance Hope For Low Income Earners

A-G says Fiji has allocated money for crops; insurance groups to launch affordable products soon.

- JYOTI PRATIBHA SUVA Edited by Naisa Koroi

Government has set aside money which low income earners will be able to access to pay premiums to insure their homes.

This was highlighte­d by Attorney-General and Minister for Economy and Minister Responsibl­e for Climate Change, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum, yesterday at the Climate Action Pacific Partnershi­p event at the Grand Pacific Hotel in Suva. He was one of the panellists on public and private financing and insurance and gave an overview of what Government was doing to help Fijians.

He said money had also been allocated for crop insurance through which farmers could insure their crops like dalo, sugarcane.

In Fiji, he said, only 10 per cent of homes were insured because the majority could not afford to meet the criteria set up in our building codes. He has been having a series of meetings with the Insurance Council of Fiji to convince them to have affordable insurance products available which would give low to middle income earners the chance to insure their homes.

He said that before the next cyclone season, which starts in November, insurance companies would be launching affordable insurance products. Mr Sayed-Khaiyum also stressed on the need to invest in infrastruc­ture to make it withstand the effects of climate change. He gave the example of how utilities like electricit­y lines were now undergroun­d along the new four-lane road from Nadi Internatio­nal Airport.

This exercise, he said, cost $20million more but that means that in the event of another devastatin­g cyclone, the power lines would not take a hit, as was seen during the devastatio­n left in the wake of Tropical Cyclone Winston.

He further called for the need for middle income countries, like Fiji, to access some concession­al funds in the event of natural disasters. Currently, since Fiji is said to be a middle income country, we do not have access to certain climate funds.

Mr Sayed-Khaiyum explained that tropical cyclones like Winston and Pam could set a country’s developmen­t back by a decade or two. Therefore, to counter that, it was important that concession­al funds are made accessible.

 ?? Photo: Jone Luvenitoga ?? Attorney-General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum at the Grand Pacific Hotel, Suva, on June 3, 2017.
Photo: Jone Luvenitoga Attorney-General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum at the Grand Pacific Hotel, Suva, on June 3, 2017.
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