ASEAN farmers gain better benefits from crop failure insurance using a satellite-based technology

By Claudius Bredehöft

Crop failure insurance can now be offered more efficiently for small farmers in ASEAN countries.

A satellite-based technology that provides governments with data for improved rice harvest forecasts and for the fast and accurate determination of crop failures has now been developed by a consortium consisting of the reinsurance company Swiss Re, the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI), the Swiss satellite technology company sarmap, the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) and the German Development Cooperation GIZ. This means that crop failure insurance can now be offered more efficiently for small farmers.

In India, this technology has already been used to further develop state crop failure insurance. In 2017,
it was possible to pay out claims to 22,500 smallholders. These experiences are now spread in Vietnam, Cambodia, Indonesia, and Thailand.

To introduce and disseminate this insurance, the first training of the multipliers took place in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. The training was carried out by the regional GIZ Sustainable Agro-Food Project in the ASEAN region (ASEAN Sustainable Agrifood Systems/ ASEAN SAS).

In addition to data availability insurance programmes often fail because of their low profile and poor understanding of the target group. The participants of the training, which consist of government representatives, non-governmental organizations, universities and the private sector, were prepared to introduce farmers to the concept of crop failure insurance.

The local insurance company FORTE Insurance PLC will then pilot crop failure insurance in selected provinces.