Insurance: François Bakou stands up to the Oil Pool of Senegal

The insurance sector in Senegal is under tension. The insurance company Amsa multiplies the maneuvers not to join the Oil & Gas Risks Insurance Pool of Senegal. As a reminder, the grouping of insurance companies approved on the Senegalese market, which aims to cover oil risks according to the principle of co-insurance, is a vertical organization with SEN-RE and the International Reinsurance market.

The approach, a first in the area of ​​the Interafrican Conference of Insurance Markets (CIMA *), went in the direction of building the capacity of Local Content of the private insurance sector in Senegal.
President Macky SALL has decided since the advent of oil and gas discoveries, to reform the sector and to organize it (implementation of the COS Petrogaz *, reinforcement of the respect of the standards of transparency EITI *, new code petroleum, law on the local content …) so that it can have a coherent organization to optimize the benefits of the resources by the reinforcement of the capacities of the local contents in favor of the private sector Senegalese. Should we recall the statement of President Macky Sall during the Consultative Group and concerning the local content, including that of the insurance sector?

On 21 December 2018 at the Hotel Salomon de Rothschild, the Head of State had estimated that as regards: « … the management of logistics, as well as various services, insurance, all that. We will be able to work with the national and international private sector so that … it can be conducive to national development …  »

The ambiguous exception of Amsa

The insurance sector understood the message issued by the Head of State and wished to respond favorably by organizing itself by setting up a pool dedicated to oil and gas risks. Today this Pool is functional and all companies are members with an ambiguous exception of AMSA.

Ambiguous because the latter sent an official letter designating Déthié AW as representing his interests within the Pool, but at the same time AMSA does not sign the statutes. Second fact that highlights the ambiguity of AMSA, it affixes its signature and stamp on a case from the Pool, and then send an email indicating that it wished to cancel its participation. What explanation to give to such contrary positions?
What is the message that passes through François BAKOU who maneuver to arrogate all insurance programs on oil and gas in Senegal, a risk that covers a Senegalese raw material, which according to the constitution belongs to the Senegalese people? In principle, the benefits of this program must first and foremost be managed transparently in their reintegration into the Senegalese economy.

Before the creation of Pool, a Scientific Committee had been set up with as members Mamadou DIOP, CEO of SONAM, Alioune DIAGNE, CEO of AXA Assurance Senegal, Majdi YASSINE, Director Director General of SAHAM Assurance Senegal (member of the SANLAM Group ).
This scientific committee was chaired by Adama NDIAYE, current President of FANAF, former Comptroller of the Cima, Ex DGA of AVENIR RE, Ex-CEO of SEN RE and administrator in several insurance companies in CIMA zone.
After a work of bencharmaking experiences related to insurance coverage of oil activities on a global scale and particularly African, the conclusion of the study was clear and was summed up to the establishment of the Pool Oil and Gas.
The advantages of such a Pool are many to mention only the common construction at the level of a market of strong local content, the optimization of the cost-oil in favor of the State by taking advantage of the experience of the Senegalese market in the international reinsurance market, supervision of insurance and reinsurance regulations with the participation of SEN RE, generation of income for the sector up to 25% of the amount of the insurance premium, or about 10 billion a year, which can contribute to the subscriptions of bond issues of the State of Senegal.

It should be remembered that insurance companies in Senegal are the first contributors to government bond issues and Senegalese treasury bills. To reinforce this trend, experts believe that a treatment of reductive operations should be avoided by setting up an underpayment fronting, a devastating procedure that reduces the insurance company to a mere intermediary for risks that are retroceded entirely. outside.

The local content against the powerful lobbies

Unfortunately, it is this scenario of fronting, contrary to the wishes of President Macky Sall on the involvement of the private sector, and the latest reforms of the CIMA, which is favored by some lobbyists.
Starting with the Senegalese-Ivorian François Bakou, who wants to play solo, strongly supported by Marsh Senegal, which is owned in the minority by the Marsh Mc Lennan group, an international brokerage firm, and, we hear, some executives of the Directorate of Insurance.

The Amsa company, majority owned by François BAKOU, had, it will be remembered, received a market of more than 10 billion CFA francs for SENELEC’s IFC in 2017. The same structure had made headlines in the Company’s business. African Refining (SAR) and the ARTP (regulator of telecom), cases for which the General Inspectorate of State and the Court of Auditors had pinned AMSA …

Why the powerful François Bakou is now a snub to the Senegalese market? Some claim that he finds his protection in very high place, which moreover is to be verified … Would he benefit from a guarantee allowing him to compete solo to ensure to himself and by Amsa, an oil risk?
Some people talk about potential conflict of interest by recalling that the Director of Insurance, Mamadou Dème, is also a director within the company AMSA …, in the name of ultra minority shares that the state had acquired in this company.
Some people think that the posture must be clarified as soon as possible, and that this situation can not be maintained for reasons of ethics and deontology, the regulator must be equidistant from the interest of a single company, that he must control. A Director General of the place indicates that « this situation is explosive, it endangers a whole sector, and exposes the credibility of the State and its dismemberments. Moreover, why does the Insurance Department continue to occupy such a position that compromises its legitimacy as a supervisory authority?  »
To confirm the words of this DG, our political analysts say that President Macky SALL in his new mandate wants to put order to strengthen institutions. The road map is emerging little by little, but what our analysts remember are two messages launched by the head of state, the first, for Ministers, to remind them that « the ministerial positions are not eternal « And the second message is to have » … the sense of listening, social dialogue with stakeholders from different sectors, and openness to all the forces of the Nation.  » In addition, President Sall urges the government to focus its efforts on « … promoting the private sector »

The common objectives between Amsa and Marsh Senegal are perfectly reflected in the recent statements by Cheikh Bâ, CEO of Marsh Senegal, saying the oil risk « can not be ensured by the Senegalese market ».
These statements, according to the entire market, are totally unfounded. Industry stakeholders have indicated that they now better understand the purpose of statements by Sheikh BA that would short-circuit a whole market to the nose and the beard of the Senegalese economy …

Our investigations have revealed that the Senegalese market has a real and real competence for years, which is confirmed by a sub-capital guarantee of nearly 15 billion USD and this on only 10 customers. In addition, the market, through Saham Assurance, had insured CAIRN ENERGY’s exploration phases for secured capital of a few hundred million USD. Why, therefore, with regard to the sector’s service record, does an insurance « professional » like MARSH underestimate the market which, for information purposes, is becoming the second largest insurance market in the CIMA Zone?

The Pool subscribes its first contract

To confirm the effectiveness of the Pool, Majdi YASSINE, and Adama NDIAYE, respectively, President and Executive Director of the Pool of Oil and Gas Risks, have just announced the realization of the first case by providing a platform for capital of nearly 130 billion FCFA, with a co-insurance that served all insurance companies (28 out of 29, only Amsa did not subscribe), creating an unprecedented solidarity in the market. This business, subscribed collectively, augurs great prospects for pooling the skills and abilities of all. In a first, Pool has collaborated with the international reinsurance market including the London market and according to the criteria demanded by donors. The operation thus completed demonstrates to the satisfaction that the Senegalese market is mature enough and competent to structure solutions to international standards.

Moreover, other international brokers specializing in international reinsurance have, unlike MARSH, approached the market through the Pool, to show their support for this initiative and their willingness to work for the construction of a structuring market. for the benefit of Senegal by providing capacities exceeding USD 3 billion. A strategy apparently not in line with the objectives of the Marsh McLennan Group which, through Marsh Senegal, participates, in collaboration with AMSA, to destabilize the petrogas pool. How does the Insurance Department intend to play its role, which is to remind, is to favor any initiative carried by a market in order to support its development and cohesion? Will the current Insurance Department be so brave and visionary to accelerate the Ministerial Order process to participate inclusively in the emergence of the insurance sector in Senegal, as had been done in a courageous and transparent way in 1998? for the risks of Public Transport of Travelers, which allowed to gather a whole market to avoid the bankruptcy of a sensible risk class? Will she yield to the obstinacy of a single company? So who has an interest in scuttling the petrogaz pool?


* CIMA covers 14 countries including Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Congo, Côte d’Ivoire, Gabon, Guinea Bissau, Equatorial Guinea, Mali, Niger, Central African Republic, Senegal, Chad and Togo.

* Cos Petrogaz: the Strategic Orientation Committee of Oil and Gas is responsible for assisting the President of the Republic and the government in « the definition, supervision, evaluation and control of the implementation of the policy of the State in the development of oil and gas projects. It is composed of the Prime Minister, the Minister in charge of Energy, the Minister of Industry and Mines, the EITI, representatives of the institutions of the Republic as well as other structures involved in the sector. energy.

* EITI: The EITI Standard is the international standard for transparency and accountability around a country’s oil, gas and mineral resources.


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