In what is a global first for the insurance industry, 13 insurance-related organisations have signed the newly created Nairobi Declaration, promising to drive action in achieving the UN’s sustainable development goals (SDGs).
FSD Africa, Sanlam General Insurance Kenya, Namib Re, Cenfri; UK Aid, the Association of Kenya Insurers, the South African Insurance Association, ICEALion Group, African Risk Capacity, the Regional Center for Sustainable Finance, Zep Re, Continental Re and the Organization of Eastern and Southern Africa Insurers have all become founding signatories of the Nairobi Declaration.
The announcement came during the UN PSI’s fourth Africa Market Event, at which UN PSI lead Butch Bucani said: “Africa is ahead of the world in creating and signing up to the Nairobi Declaration. In a very concrete way, we are showing how African insurance leaders are a force for good.”
The UN PSI hopes that increasing numbers of African insurance leaders will sign the Declaration and continue to drive the agenda forward as the UN PSI also moves to develop dedicated insurance SDGs.
The CEOs who made the commitment during the summit agreed it was not only a proud moment in Africa but also on the global stage.
Hope Murera, group CEO for Zep Re, welcomed African insurance leaders “coming to the table”, while Lesley Ndlovu, CEO of Africa Risk Capacity said he was “really proud to be part of such a groundbreaking effort.”
And Lawrence Nazare, CEO of Continental Re, said he was delighted that the movement has progressed so far. “When we met in Lagos two years ago, we called for action and this is an extremely important step in the journey.”
The Declaration states:
As risk managers, insurers and investors, the African insurance industry has a key role to play in promoting economic, social and environmental sustainability – in other words, sustainable development – including ensuring a sustainable recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic.
In this vein, under the auspices of UN Environment Programme’s Principles for Sustainable Insurance Initiative (PSI), we declare our commitment to take the following actions to support the achievement of the SDGs:
- Risk management
- Advance the assessment, management and disclosure of climate change-related risks and opportunities, building on the PSI’s project to pilot the recommendations of the Financial Stability Board’s Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD)
- Advance the assessment, management and disclosure of environmental, social and governance (ESG) risks and opportunities across all lines of business (non-life, life & health, pensions), building on the PSI’s ESG guide for non-life insurance business and other PSI guidance on specific sustainability issues (e.g. illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing; plastic pollution, tobacco risks, UNESCO World Heritage Sites)
- Support the Insurance Sustainable Development Goals (Insurance SDGs) being developed by the PSI to harness insurance products and solutions to help achieve the SDGs
- Close the insurance protection gap by actively developing and promoting inclusive and innovative insurance solutions (including through insurtech and nature-based solutions) for households, businesses and governments in order to build resilient cities and communities as well as sustainable food and agriculture systems, among others
- Support the transition to a resilient, net-zero emissions economy, building on the work of the PSI to establish a Net-Zero Insurance Alliance
- Support the transition to a resilient, net-zero emissions economy, building on the work of the UN-convened Net-Zero Asset Owner Alliance
- Policy, regulatory and industry engagement
- Engage with policymakers, regulators and industry associations on key sustainability issues for the African insurance industry, including through the work of the Sustainable Insurance Forum (SIF), International Association of Insurance Supervisors (IAIS), and Vulnerable Twenty Group of Ministers of Finance (V20)
- Sustainable insurance thinking and practices
- Promote the adoption and implementation of the four Principles for Sustainable Insurance across African insurance markets
- Enhance the knowledge and capacity of the African insurance industry on sustainable insurance
- Shape the sustainable insurance agenda in Africa and strengthen the global effort of insuring for sustainable development