Crop Insurances for a climate resilient agriculture in the post-2025 ASEAN vision

Story: Metta Kongphan-apirak /Agriculture and Food Cluster; Photos: AgriCRF Project

Public-private partnerships cooperated on a post-2025 action plan for climate-resilient agriculture in ASEAN

Bali, 16 May 2024 – ASEAN Member States (AMS) identified joint recommendations for policy and capacity building interventions to increase the uptake of crop insurances in the region. Agriculture is a cornerstone of livelihood in most ASEAN Member States, yet its sustainability is increasingly threatened by extreme weather events. Droughts, floods, and storms have resulted in severe crop losses across the region, leaving millions of smallholder farmers vulnerable. Limited availability of financial instruments, particularly crop insurance, worsens their economic and social stability.

In a concerted effort to fortify agricultural resilience against climate change, the Regional Technical Meeting on Climate-Resilient Crop Insurance in ASEAN was convened on 15-16 May 2024. More than 30 participants from ASEAN countries joined in the event. The two-day meeting served as a platform for ASEAN countries to share ideas and good practices to strengthen resilience and support on sustainable agricultural development. 

Julian Tost, Project Director, GIZ

The representatives provided recommendations for capacity building activities and knowledge products for ASEAN member states at the different stages of crop insurance development – from having no programme, piloting or scaling-up phase.

The two outputs – actionable recommendations for policy and knowledge products – which came out during the latest Technical Meeting on Climate-Resilient Crop Insurance in ASEAN have showcased a joint effort to address the importance of crop insurance, generate recommendations, and foster collaboration on a regional scale.

Dr Pham Quang Minh, Head of Food, Agriculture and Forestry Division, ASEAN Secretariat said “Crop insurance plays a vital role in managing climate risks and protecting farmers against the adverse effects of natural disasters. By providing financial protection and enabling faster recovery, crop insurance not only supports sustainable development but also promotes food security and enhances the competitiveness of our agricultural economies. It is our hope that through discussions during the event, we will establish common goals on the importance of crop insurance, with actionable recommendations for ASEAN policies, and catalyse cooperative efforts on a regional scale.” 

Mr. Hirman Abu, Special Senior Officials Meeting of the ASEAN Ministers on Agriculture and Forestry (SOM-AMAF) Representative from Brunei Darussalam, also emphasised the importance of climate resilience crop insurance products that are accessible and affordable for smallholder farmers from income and agricultural productivity loss due impact of extreme weather events that are more severe and frequent these days. Thus, the promotion of private sector involvement in insurance as well as the importance of capacity building for stakeholders to better understand benefit of insurance products should not be forgotten.  

Dr. Pongthai Thaiyothin, Deputy Director General of the Department of Agriculture

During the meeting, participants deep dived into feasibility and challenges to develop climate-resilient crop insurance solutions through public-private partnerships from bundled index-based crop insurance with sustainability standard shared by Blue Marble, Indonesia and different innovative crop insurance models in Public and Private Partnership by Philippine Crop Insurance Corporation (PCIC). The status of crop insurance in ASEAN presented and suggested for technical capacity, knowledge and policy needs for countries at the different stages of crop insurance development and implementation readiness. Capacity-building needs, especially on insurance and financial management awareness, for all stakeholders from farmers to policy makers and insurers were also strongly echoed by all participants.

Mr.Israel Quinsay De La Cruz, Department Manager III, Business Development & Marketing Department, Department of Finance - Philippine Crop Insurance Corporation

Participants also explored the importance of technology and knowledge sharing in advancing crop insurance schemes. Crop insurance and other climate resilience financing measures such as innovative green loan were considered to be integrated in the ASEAN post-2025 vision and action plan to elevate regional cooperation towards climate resilience in agricultural sector.   

The meeting was jointly organised by the ASEAN Secretariat, the Promotion of Crop Insurance in ASEAN through Public and Private Partnership Project commissioned by the Japan ASEAN Integration Fund (JAIF) and implemented by Sanyu Consultants Inc, Japan, and the Innovative Climate Risk Financing for the Agricultural Sector in the ASEAN Region, commissioned by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and implemented by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH. ■

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