Samoan company establishes Insurance services in Timor Leste

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LOCAL STAFF OF FEDERAL INSURANCE TIMOR: L-R: Manuel Marques (Insurance Officer), Maria Alexio (Insurance Officer), Zelia Yama (Insurance Officer), Perosi Su’a, Palmira Soares (Snr Insurance Officer), Hermenegildo de Carvalho (Manager)

LOCAL STAFF OF FEDERAL INSURANCE TIMOR: L-R: Manuel Marques (Insurance Officer), Maria Alexio (Insurance Officer), Zelia Yama (Insurance Officer), Perosi Su’a, Palmira Soares (Snr Insurance Officer), Hermenegildo de Carvalho (Manager)

Persistence has paid off for local Insurer Federal Pacific Insurance whose sister company Federal Insurance Timor (F.I.T) has been granted a General Insurance licence in one of the worlds’ newest nations, Timor Leste. 

The company received final licensing approval from the Banco Central de Timor Leste (B.C.T.L) after a lengthy application process of close to five years. 

It is only the second General Insurance Licence granted in that country.

Federal Insurance Timor S.A also becomes the second Samoan-backed company to set-up business in the countrys’ capital city of Dili.

“We’re very excited by the approval of our application as it has taken a great deal of effort and time – some 1000-plus hours of work,” said Company Director Papali’itele Alan Hutchison.

“We had a final inspection in mid-August and we were thrilled to receive the formal approval shortly thereafter,” he said. “Since then it has been full speed in the set-up of offices, staff training and various administration processes.”

“F.P.I would like to acknowledge the Central Bank of Samoa, in particular Governor Maiava Atalina Ainuu-Enari in her support and encouragement of FPI to make the investment – Fa’afetai Tele lava!.” Timor staffed, Samoan managed The Company is fully Timorese staffed, something which Papali’itele said was part of the company’s overall strategy.

 “We have a local team of very intelligent and talented Timorese - all of whom speak English, Portuguese, Bahasa Indonesia and Tetum, the indigenous language,” Papali’i said. “As with our associated company (Pacific Holdings as agent Western Union in Timor Leste) local staff will spend the first few years working with and being trained by Pacific-based staff.” 

Perosi Su’a from Federal Pacific Insurance (F.P.I) in Samoa currently heads the team in Dili. 

Namulauulu Sami Leota (L) with Timorese Independence leader, Kay Rala Xanana Gusmao
Namulauulu Sami Leota (L) with Timorese Independence leader, Kay Rala Xanana Gusmao

General Manager of FPI, Namulauulu Sami Leota was effusive in his praise for Mrs. Su’a. 

“Perosi has had a lot of experience in the Insurance business and we see this new role as a challenge she will rise to,” he said. “Ultimately this benefits F.P.I overall as the experience in Timor Leste will broaden her understanding of managing a new company in an environment different to Samoa.”

As one of only two local insurers the company hopes to build on the relationships its associate company (Pacific Holdings) has built over the last 15 years of trading in Timor Leste.

“We have been operational in Timor Leste for some time and we’ve seen the country grow from very turbulent times following the restoration of independence to a more steady society where people seek the rule of law and want protection of their assets,” said Papali’itele.

Federal Insurance Timor will offer a range of Insurance products such as Material Damage, Business Interruption, Motor Vehicle, Contractors All Risk, Public Liability, Personal Accident and Marine Cargo.

Background

Federal Pacific Insurance was launched in Samoa in 1999. It is represented in four countries in the Asia/Pacific region and in London through their representative office.

The Company prides itself on its commitment to its customers and has played a significant part in insuring a wide variety of risks –personal, commercial and government - throughout the Pacific region.

Federal Pacific Insurance has offices in: Samoa, Tonga, United Kingdom, Cook Islands and Timore Leste.

© Samoa Observer 2016

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