Various adverse weather conditions, to include storms, rain and hail, have caused damages to agricultural crops, resulting in insurance claims made for as much as 4 million euros by the beginning of August of this year, according to data summary of BTA Baltic Insurance Company AAS (BTA).
“This year a number of times we have seen hail and strong wind, having adverse effects on crop fields. Lodgings of crops in many places, along with other damages, have resulted in insurance claims for a total of 4 million euros. Of course, there have been regional differences, nevertheless the overall volume of insurance claims made has been really impressive, compared to the previous year, when the total amount of insurance claims for damages to crop fields reached 2.6 million euros,” comments BTA Insurance Claims Handling Department Director Kārlis Liepiņš.
BTA is the Latvian market leader in crop fields insurance, offering, for a streak of years, farmers to insure their crops, legumes and oil plants. Serious threat to the new crops are various unpredictable natural disasters, to include drought and lodgings, especially it applies to winter wheat. A lot of insurance claims have also been received for damages caused by wild animals.
“Although not unfrequently we hear crop farmers say that crop insurance is ‘not worth messing with financially’, not profitable, the present day reality shows us a different picture. Besides, each case is arguably individual: the client in agricultural crops insurance may point to the risks he or she is most exposed to and choose the preferable insurance risk combination to be covered, for instance, hail; hail together with rain; freezing; storm. BTA is the pioneer insurer in Latvia, who offers an option to farmers to get insured against damages caused by wild animals and birds, as well as third-party illegal activity, lightning strike and fire risk,” explains K. Liepiņš.
According to the experience of the past years, various natural disasters become an increasing threat to crops, on the other hand, farmers now have an option to get their crop fields insured against adverse weather conditions, and this option also has earmarked funding from the European Union and the national budget, in the light of this, the Ministry of Agriculture has not planned any compensations be paid from the national budget, thus moving the protection of agricultural crops in the direction of the insurance realm.
“We possess a good understanding of the agricultural industry specifics and the production process, therefore we offer each client to have an individualized insurance cover. And, not to be overlooked – if you opt for crop field insurance, you may be entitled to receive state support for up to 50% of the insurance premium amount,” emphasizes K.Liepiņš.
To this day, crop fields for a total of 131,500 hectares have been insured with BTA, predominantly wheat and rapeseed, with regional insured field dominants being Zemgale, Latgale and Kurzeme.
BTA Baltic Insurance Company is one of the leading insurance companies in the Baltics, offering the broadest range of non-life insurance services in Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia. BTA employs more than 1,000 employees in the Baltics. The largest shareholder of BTA is Vienna Insurance Group AG with close to 200 years of experience in the insurance business. With about 50 companies in 25 countries and more than 25,000 employees, Vienna Insurance Group is a clear market leader in its CEE markets. Vienna Insurance Group is the best-rated company of ATX, the leading index of Vienna Stock Exchange with a rating of A+ with stable outlook from Standard & Poor’s; its share is also listed on the Prague Stock Exchange.
Marketing and Public Relations Department Director
BTA Baltic Insurance Company AAS