St. Lucia and Grenada have become the first two regional countries to be issued with Caribbean Oceans and Aquaculture Sustainability Facility (COAST) fisheries parametric insurance policy, the Caribbean Catastrophe Risk Insurance Facility Segregated Portfolio Company (CCRIF SPC) has announced.
COAST has been developed with the support of the United States State Department, and has been led by the World Bank and CCRIF.
In addition, the Belize-based Caribbean Regional Fisheries Mechanism (CRFM) has played an essential role, as benefitting countries must be implementing the Caribbean Community Common Fisheries Policy.
Initial funding for COAST has been provided by the State Department and the Caribbean is the first region globally to develop and implement parametric climate risk insurance for the fisheries sector.
“For the first time, vulnerable fishing communities will have access to insurance developed specifically for their needs, protecting their livelihoods and playing a key role in closing the protection gap,” CCRIF said, noting that since its inception in 2007, CCRIF has been providing insurance for tropical cyclones and earthquakes to regional countries.
“While it is governments that purchase COAST policies, this parametric insurance product is unique – it incorporates a livelihood protection component and a tropical cyclone component -sovereign insurance-,” CCRIF said, noting that the COAST product provides coverage for losses caused by “bad weather” on fisherfolk and for direct damages caused by tropical cyclones to fishing vessels, fishing equipment and fishing infrastructure.
“The World Bank has played a major role in the development of this product to ensure that it promotes resilience in the fisheries sector and contributes to the sustainable management of the ecosystems that support the sector by incentivizing policy reforms for the uptake of climate-smart fisheries practices and increasing coastal resilience.”
CCRIF said that this will help to build a stronger foundation for advancing the blue economy, while supporting the livelihoods of those who depend on the valuable marine resource.