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IPEC unveils country specific mortality tables for Zimbabwe

PHILLIMON MHLANGA

Zimbabwe now has new country specific mortality tables following the launch in the capital Harare on Monday,Business Times can report.

The southern African nation has been using tables made in other countries , including South Africa and the UK.

The mortality tables that have been created cover the following business types: individual/real life, annuity, pre-retirement pension, post-retirement pension, group assured lives, and funeral assurance/microinsurance.

A mortality table is a statistical chart that displays the average life expectancy for a given age group and the frequency of death for that group.

Speaking at the launch of the mortality tables, the Insurance and Pensions Commission (IPEC) Commissioner, Grace Muradzikwa, said this marked a key milestone for Zimbabwe.

“As you may all be aware, Zimbabwe’s insurance and pensions industry has largely relied on mortality tables developed in other jurisdictions such as South Africa and the United Kingdom, in pricing and reserving various products. This was mainly on account of the absence of Zimbabwe-specific mortality tables,” Muradzikwa said.

She added: “However, using tables from other countries has its own challenges which includes the mortality experiences in other countries are less likely to be a true reflection of Zimbabwe’s experiences due to differences in economic, social, and demographic situations. This is notwithstanding expert judgement that can be applied to such tables to reflect local mortality experiences.

“The other challenge is mortality changes over time due to new lifestyles, working habits, and medical advancements. These changes are broadly country-specific, which makes it difficult to adopt the experiences of other countries.

“There is also a potential over/undercharging of insurance products, which may affect insurance uptake in the country.

(Also),  over/under reserving for products may negatively affect the overall risk and solvency management for insurance companies and pension funds. Alive to these challenges, we took a bold decision to facilitate the development of our own tables primarily leveraging on our local expertise and resources.”


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