Schlettwein calls for local ownership of financial entities

23 Jul 2015 10:40am
WINDHOEK, 23 JUL (NAMPA) – The Minister of Finance has called for more local ownership of financial entities, as well as the training and mentoring of young Namibians in the sector.
Calle Schlettwein made the call during opening of the two-day Insurance and Investment Summit 2015 in Windhoek on Wednesday.
“Over the next five years, the intentions of the government are plain and simple but very important. These are to ensure that there is an increased ownership of financial entities by Namibians while at the same time ensuring that these entities absorb as many Namibians as possible. We encourage financial entities, including insurers to ensure adequate training and mentoring of young Namibians, who want to enter the financial market as business owners, or as employees.” he stressed.
Schlettwein said it is a collective desire to see Namibians ascend to top management and board leadership positions in financial institutions. He questioned 25 years after independence, if there is no pool of properly qualified Namibians in top management and board leadership positions.
The finance ministry with the assistance of the Namibian Financial Institutions Supervisory Authority (Namfisa) has addressed critical and urgent shortcomings and gaps in legislation that is used to regulate and supervise the industry. New pieces of legislation have been developed to strengthen policy coherence with Government goals across the industry segments. These include the Namfisa Bill, Financial Institutions and Markets Bill, Micro-lending Bill and the Financial Services Adjudicator Bill.
About revising Regulation 15 of the Long Term Insurance Act, Schlettwein indicated that Government will require from long-term insurance companies operating in the country to invest 35 per cent of subscriptions in domestic assets within Namibia.
Once revisited, the government expects compliance with this regulation by the insurance industry.
Government views this regulation as critical for investments, as local investments will contribute to economic development, poverty reduction and ultimately, prosperity for all Namibians.
“These new set of laws are expected to alter completely the non-banking financial sector and its operations due to fundamental changes that they will introduce. For instance, the new legislation pertaining to the insurance industry, introduce micro-insurance to the market that’s primary aim is to avail insurance products to the masses of the people that are currently excluded from the insurance market.” he said.
The summit ends Thursday.
Majority long-term insurance companies in Namibia are not owned by Namibian nationals.