Krasnodar, 9 August – Yug Times. Krasnodar province has reportedly become the sixth top region on the Russian market of governmental-backed agricultural insurance. It has also become the champion region in the Southern Federal District, the National Association of Agricultural Insurers (NAAI) announced.
According to NAAI President Kornei Bidzhov, “the restoration of the practice of governmental support of agricultural insuring that is being seen this year, has once again brought to the foreground the country’s major agricultural regions, including Krasnodar province.”
The total of the accrued insurance premium reached 111.8 million roubles in the first half of 2019; of them, about 105.3 million roubles are insurances of crop production, and about 6.4 million roubles – stockbreeding.
Experts agree that the return of governmental backup did play its positive role in the restoration of the agricultural insurance market, but assert that there were a string of other factors that contributed to it.
Vadim Konstantinovich, Head of the Department of Agricultural Insurance of Rosgosstrakh (RGS Group), draws attention to the fact that apart from the restored governmental support, several new norms appeared in agricultural insurance that found a positive response of farmers.
“In my opinion, a positive role in this trend was also played by the legislative changes enforced last March, namely the exclusion of the death threshold, expansion of the franchise corridor to 50%, and a possibility to insure the future yield to as much as 70% of its esteemed cost. Besides, farmers got an opportunity to insure crops against separate risks and to choose them at their own disposal – for the first time in the national legislation. The results of the spring sowing showed that all these novelties let farmers insure their harvests paying less money. As a result, the interest for insurance services has obviously grown. At the same time, based on long-term insurance practice, I would say that winter crops were insured more actively in Krasnodar province than spring crops,” Konstantinovich said.
The players of the market note that insurance is still better accessible for big companies that have sufficient assets, whereas petty farmers are experiencing lack of money and resources to initiate court proceedings to claim compensation from their insurance company.
Experts state that the current federal insurance law is extremely ineffective: as a rule, an insurance company demands confirmation of the weather station in case of an insured event, while in Russia may be located some 70 km or more from the suffered farm. It is nearly impossible to collect evidence in such conditions, so that farmers may be left without any compensation. In their disputes with the insurer, it is the latter that usually wins. This fact reduces farmers’ interest in agricultural insurance, even if it is backed by state.
“Last year, the Kuban Agricultural Holding got into a very unpleasant situation. With huge effort, they managed to get the insurance – but only the sum they had paid as the insurance premium. And this is a common situation,” Igor Lobach, Chairman of Kuban Agricultural Union, recounts. “The market needs tough terms, so that farmers would be confident that they would receive compensation. Without doing this, government-backed agricultural insurance would remain a mere transfer of budget money to the insurers’ bank accounts.”