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Uganda - Agricultural Insurance Takeup Slows

A slow sensitisation drive is affecting uptake of agricultural insurance in Uganda, the Agro Consortium has revealed.

“Sensitisation is our challenge because we lack the kind of resources we need to do mass awareness. What we have done so far has been funded by the government but it is not enough,” Agro Consortium technical manager Muntaradzi Daka, told journalists early this week at Uganda Insurers’ Association (UIA) offices in Kampala.

Statistics from the consortium indicate that the amount of insurance cover accorded to farmers is Shs72.5b.

About 23,000 farmers, majorly small scale farmers, have taken on the scheme, against the targeted 50,000 by the end of July this year.

According to Mr Daka, the consortium will not be able to meet its target because of delays in implementing the scheme.

According to UIA, the government introduced the Uganda Insurance Agriculture Scheme as an insurance subsidy programme for both small and large scale farmers and farmers in high risk areas.

This was done to ensure every farmer in Uganda can be protected from the effects of losses of their crops or livestock on their overall income that season.

Government currently contributes 30 per cent to large-scale farmers’ premiums and 50 per cent to small scale farmers’ premiums.

The insurance policy provides cover against physical loss or damage to growing crops by uncontrollable pests, diseases, drought or fire. It also provides cover for death of animals as a result of fire, lightning, floods or diseases.

On what needs to be done to increase the uptake of agricultural insurance, former minister for agriculture Victoria Sekitoleko said farmers need vital information.

She said: “This year government removed tax from insurance and this has made it more affordable but many farmers are not aware.”

Source – http://allafrica.com