“I guess we are very lucky in the Philippines because our government – the Insurance Commission – has been very supportive in the kind of work that we do,” says Aris Alip. “They believe that empowering the poor through owning microinsurance companies is the best manifestation of poverty eradication.”

Alip is the managing director of CARD MBA, which has been behind not only the development of the microinsurance industry in the Philippines, but throughout South-East Asia.

The cooperative model of insurance has been so successful that it has been replicated by CARD MBA in other Asian countries including Vietnam, Cambodia and Indonesia. “We’’re also pursuing in Laos, we will also go to Myanmar, so we can replicate the CARD MBA model,” says Alip. But he is also aware of the need to work with governments outside the Philippines to provide a policy environment in which cooperatives can flourish.

While Alip is at the forefront of this growth, he’’s also a big proponent of the need to introduce standards in the microinsurance industry. It is a specialized industry which needs a responsive touch, he says. “We pay within a day or three days or five days at the maximum because when you’’re dealing with the poor, they need these funds very badly,” says Alip.

This story is an IYC Yearbook feature: https://ica.coop/en/iycbook