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Nigerian regulator raises capital requirements for insurers

Nigeria's National Insurance Commission more than tripled the minimum capital requirements for insurers.

According to a circular dated May 20, the minimum capital requirement for insurers with life and property and casualty businesses was raised to at least 18 billion Nigerian naira from 5 billion naira.

The base capital needed for P&C insurers was increased to 10 billion naira from 3 billion naira, while the requirement for life insurers is now 8 billion naira, versus 2 billion naira previously. Reinsurers must have capital of at least 20 billion naira, compared with the previously mandated 10 billion naira.

Existing companies have until June 30, 2020, to meet the new requirements, which is effective immediately for the issuance of new licenses. Takaful operators and "micro-insurance" companies are not covered by the new requirements.

As of May 20, US$1 was equivalent to 359.75 Nigerian naira.