“They are the ones who make things happen, they are the ones who make things work.” Growing up in Senegal, Marieme Ba witnessed the daily reality of women in emerging countries. Today, as the coordinator of the Emerging Customers project at AXA Mansard (Nigeria) – which aims to serve those who are most in need – she works in a country where women continue to face discrimination and are underrepresented in management positions.
“The social environment is very important and puts pressure on the shoulders of young women”, she adds. Although they have fewer opportunities and cannot always achieve what they want, the main concern of these women is always the same: to improve the lives of their family.
“A woman never stops thinking about that”, says Hadil Abdel-Kader, project manager at the head of the Emerging Customers department and regulatory affairs at AXA Egypt – a country where the literacy rate for women remains significantly lower than for men. “If we don’t give her the resources, it creates a lot of pressure”.
The protection of emerging populations aims to fill this gap between the lack of economic opportunities and the desire to protect one’s family. What’s more, women “think longer-term and are more careful with money than men, especially in low-income households”, she adds.
In Thailand, social transformations – in particular, the problem of financing retirement – has left women facing unprecedented challenges. “Thai women didn’t used to have to work. They stayed at home and took care of their children. Today, society has changed, and women have more responsibility than before”, explains Monnida Musicabud, head of Strategy and Development at AXA Thailand.
She concludes, “For us, emerging customer insurance and the related services can really help women achieve their dreams, and most of all those of their children”.