Preparing for storms

A week ago, strong winds damaged 20 houses in Haa, most of them in Katsho. The storm had blown off most of their roofs.

I’m in Haa. And I was delighted to see that most of the houses have already been repaired.

Wind storms are not uncommon in Haa. Just last year several houses had been severely damaged, mostly in Samar.

In fact, wind storms are not uncommon in most parts of our country. My colleague, Dasho Damcho, is currently in Laya meeting farmers still recovering from the effects of last week’s storm. And, barely a year ago, strong winds swept through Eastern Bhutan on two occasions.

So we need to prepare ourselves.

We need to design better and stronger roofs for our traditional houses, especially since the use of CGI is increasing.

And we need to improve the rural insurance scheme. At Nu 150, the current premium is low. But at only 20,000 for a blown roof, the benefits are hardly enough to rebuild and replace a CGI roof.

Pictured is Ap Sanchu’s house in Wangtsa. Photo by Tshewang Dorji, Katsho GAO


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  1. Yes! Rural insurance scheme needs improvement. Urgently.

    But, it’s not just about low premium and larger risk coverage.

    Affordable insurance policies with adequate coverage are made possible by insurance business that practices good portfolio risk management. Conservatively, and professionally. I hope RICB does. And, I hope the government’s supervisory authority is awake and on the ball.

    Equally important is the basic facts of finance that affordable insurance with adequate coverage is made possible by a sufficiently large population of insured customer base. To spread the risk. So, it’s about making sure everyone who wants insurance has an easy access to buy the insurance. Does RICB?

    And, it is also about getting the insurance benefits delivered fast, to the customers the moment the insured risk event materializes. Does RICB?

    Obviously not. How could they, when the power of mobile cell-phone banking/insurance isn’t tapped!

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