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Monday, March 8, 2021

Insurance Market News

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Arctic Shipping Creates Insurance Headaches as Routes Open

When Captain Will Whatley guides a ship through Arctic waters, he is starkly aware of what can go wrong.Double the manpower is needed to navigate. Lookout shifts are kept to just one hour, so sailors don't lose concentration and miss a mass of floating ice. Big icebergs show up on radar, but smaller, truck-sized "bergy bits"—even more dangerous—can be missed, the captain says.The cold can freeze equipment and the earth's magnetic field disrupts compasses. If anything goes wrong…

John P. Phillips

Phillips Joins WQIS as Senior Underwriter

The Water Quality Insurance Syndicate (WQIS) appointed John P. Phillips as Senior Underwriter based in Houston, TX. Phillips will report to Justin A. Mongello in New York, NY."We are very excited to have John join the WQIS team as he brings a wealth of experience, expertise, and first-hand knowledge of WQIS' customers and our broker partners. For certain a great addition to our team," said Justin.Phillips was most recently Head of Marine Programs at Aspen Insurance U.S.-based in Houston, in charge of the development and management of all Specialty Marine Programs throughout the Americas.

Photo courtesy Marasco Marine Ltd.

The Four Dominant Criteria of Yacht Insurance

It is generally understood that the insurance coverage of a luxurious Yacht can be a headache for her owner, not having the necessary knowledge and sufficient information to make an educated decision with confidence, especially in a changing and challenging international insurance market.Yacht insurance traces its roots in an official sense back to the 17th century and falls within a special category, specifically Marine Insurance, which requires advanced knowledge and experience…

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Willis Towers Watson Launches New Cyber Insurance, CyNav for Ship Owners

Willis Towers Watson unveiled a new type of cyber insurance product for shipowners that redesigns standard cyber policies to better navigate the risks for ship operators in the digital era.The solution, CyNav, addresses cyber threats in the broadest sense, including losses that occur from cyber-related business interruptions, even when the cyber events originate with third party IT service providers.CyNav’s primary focus is to support the continuity of maritime businesses and…

Richard Greiner, Partner, Shipping & Transport at BDO, said: “The predicted 2.5% and 2.7% increases in operating costs for 2019 and 2020 respectively compare to an average fall in actual operating costs in 2018 of 1.8% across all main ship types recorded in the recent BDO OpCost study."  (Photo: BDO)

Vessel Op Costs to Rise in 2019 and 2020

International accountant and shipping adviser BDO said total operating costs in the shipping industry are expected to rise by 2.5% in 2019 and by 2.7% in 2020.Responses to the firm’s latest annual Future Operating Costs Survey revealed that insurance is the cost category likely to increase most significantly in both 2019 and 2020. In the case of protection and indemnity insurance, the predicted increase is 2.0% for each of the years under review, while hull and machinery insurance…

Sean Dalton, IUMI Cargo Committee Chair: “Exposures will continue to increase for the cargo underwriter.” (Photo: IUMI)

Marine Cargo Insurance Market Still Not Profitable

Sean Dalton, Chair of the Cargo Committee of the International Union of Marine Insurance (IUMI) has said at the organization’s annual conference in Toronto, Canada, that there has been a 2.5 percent increase in 2018 global premiums to $16.6 billion but that this increase was largely attributable to growth in global trade and exchange rate fluctuations. He added that the marine cargo market was in a state of “accelerating change” driven by underwriters taking action to address unprofitable results and to improve performance.Dalton stated: “On a global basis…

A typical fleet oiler in support of U.S. Naval operations (CREDIT: USN)

London P&I clubs Widen Middle East Threat Zone

London's marine insurance market has extended the list of waters deemed high risk to include Oman, the United Arab Emirates and the Gulf after ship attacks off Fujairah, officials said on Friday, in a move that could push up premiums.The London insurance market's Joint War Committee said in a statement that the additions cover areas of perceived enhanced risk for marine insurers and reflected enhanced regional risk."The situation will be kept under close review," said the Joint War Committee…

Lloyd's of London CEO Sees Success in 2019

Lloyd's of London is making changes that will make it more successful this year, its new chief executive said on Friday.The 300-year-old insurance market publishes the 2018 results in aggregate of the more than 80 syndicates under its roof next week.Large natural catastrophes such as hurricanes, typhoons and wildfires led to losses in the market in 2017, driving Lloyd's last year to tell its syndicates to withdraw from loss-making areas of business.Natural catastrophe losses were also heavy in 2018.John Neal, who joined Lloyd's as CEO in Oct 2018, told the Marine Insurance London conference th

Paul Jennings (Photo: North P&I)

BREXIT: North P&I Gets OK for Dublin Brexit Hub

British ship insurer North has received regulatory approval from Ireland's central bank for a new subsidiary in Dublin to ensure continued access to trade in the European Union in case Britain loses single market access, the firm said on Friday.North, which has its headquarters in the northern England city of Newcastle, is the first specialist Protection and Indemnity (P&I) club to announce regulatory approval for Brexit trading arrangements in the EU. It said a team of senior…

Ship Operating Costs Rise for Second Successive Year: Drewry

As the cost inflation is set to accelerate on higher insurance premiums, average vessel operating costs rose modestly for the second year in succession following two years of marked declines, according to the latest report published by global shipping consultancy Drewry.The report titled 'Ship Operating Costs Annual Review and Forecast 2018/19' said that typical ship operating costs accelerated moderately in 2018 as the uncertain recovery in freight markets across most cargo sectors gained momentum.Opex costs are heavily linked to developments in the wider shipping market as some costs…

IUMI Appoints Richard Turner as President

Richard Turner, European Director of Global Risk Solutions at RSA Insurance Group has been elected President of the International Union of Marine Insurance (IUMI).In accordance with the Articles of Association, IUMI’s Council formally elected Richard at their annual meeting which was held today, the final day of the IUMI annual conference in Cape Town. Richard, who has been closely associated with the global marine insurance market for 35 years, will serve a four-year term as…

London P&I Club Setting up Cyprus Office over Brexit

British ship insurer London P&I Club is setting up a new subsidiary in Cyprus to ensure continued access to trade in the European Union in case Britain loses single market access, the group told Reuters on Friday.Britain dominates the global marine insurance market and losing access to specialist Protection and Indemnity (P&I) clubs could weaken its multi-billion pound shipping services sector."We have … chosen Cyprus to establish our new post-Brexit EU subsidiary, and we are currently going through the process of setting it up and obtaining the necessary license," London Club said in a statem

World's First Marine Insurance Blockchain Platform Launched

EY, Guardtime, A.P. Møller-Maersk, Microsoft and insurance industry leaders Willis Towers Watson, XL Catlin, MS Amlin and ACORD announce members of the marine industry are using Insurwave, a blockchain platform to support marine hull insurance. In an increasingly complex and ever evolving risk landscape, global businesses will use the platform to transform how they manage risk across their organization, and how they work with brokers and (re)insurers. Insurwave, built by a joint venture between EY and Guardtime…

Willum Richards, (Photo: Association of Average Adjusters)

Association of Average Adjusters Addresses Claims Lacking Clarity

Insurance market leaders have been urged to apply their policy-reforming zeal to key areas of marine claims lacking clarity – with fishing vessel claims illustrating some of the dilemmas. The call came from Willum Richards, chairman of the Association of Average Adjusters, as he lauded the London market's Joint Hull Committee for its decision to embark on a review of the Institute Time Clauses (Hulls). He wished success to those involved in developing revised hull wordings and…

(File photo: MSC)

Top Container Shipping Lines Reviewing Iran Operations

The world's top two container shipping groups Maersk Line and MSC are reviewing their Iran operations after the United States withdrawal from the international nuclear agreement with Tehran.The 2015 agreement, worked out by the United States, five other world powers and Iran, lifted sanctions on Tehran in exchange for limits to its nuclear program.U.S. President Donald Trump also instructed his administration to re-impose U.S. sanctions after a winding down period."MSC is reviewing its services…

Concirrus, EY to Drive Change in Marine Insurance Underwriting

Insurtech Concirrus and EY announced a new agreement to accelerate the adoption of behavioral-based underwriting and risk management in marine insurance. Concirrus has created market leading artificial intelligence (AI) powered marine insurance software, and is collaborating with EY, a global leader in specialty insurance consulting, to support the evolution of one of the oldest and most traditional insurance industries. Working together will help marine insurers move from older demographic based underwriting models…

IUMI Cautions about Global Marine Insurance

Against the backdrop of encouraging global economic growth and an improved outlook for the shipping industry, the International Union of Marine Insurance (IUMI) gives expert opinion on the current state of the hull, cargo and offshore energy insurance markets at its Spring Conference in Hamburg. The past three years has seen the frequency of total losses within the global fleet stabilise at 0.13% by number (0.05% by tonnage). This is largely attributable to an improved safety climate, improvements in naval architecture and marine engineering; and more effective regulation.

(Photo: Crowley)

More Fuel on the Way to Puerto Ricans

Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rossello reported progress in getting fuel supplies to the island's 3.4 million inhabitants on Monday as they faced a 13th day largely without power after the U.S. territory was devastated by Hurricane Maria. "We've been increasing the number of gas stations that are open," Rossello said at a news briefing, with more than 720 gas stations now up and running. Puerto Rico relies on fuel supplies shipped from the mainland United States and distribution has been disrupted by the bad state of roads.

IUMI: Offshore Energy Insurance Market “Sinking”

At annual IUMI (International Union of Marine Insurance) conference in Tokyo, James McDonald, chairman of IUMI’s Offshore Energy Committee warned that the sector was “sinking”. His warning was based on declining total premium income set alongside upstream energy large losses for 2015-16 of USD 4.8 billion. McDonald explained: “In recent years it would appear that claims have exceeded the global premium base and the last two underwriting years have seen significant losses. The…

The Shipowners' Club Reports Steady Half Year Results

The Shipowners’ Club, the leading P&I insurer in the smaller and specialist vessel sector, has reported steady financial results for the six months ended 30 June 2017, despite challenging market conditions. The Club recorded a 99.3% combined ratio, consistent with previous years. The modest underwriting surplus achieved in the first six months of US$ 0.7m has been supplemented by a favourable return on the Club’s investment portfolio. This portfolio has contributed some US$ 24m of surplus in the first half of the year – a return of 3.7%.

Frank Coles, Transas CEO (Photo: Transas)

The Perfect Storm of Digitalization and Commoditization

Frank Coles, Transas CEO, delivered the keynote speech at the Transas Global Conference in Malta. We are faced with the perfect storm in the next few years. Many will conclude it is all the fault of President Trump, but in fact it is actually nothing to do with him. If anything he is going to enable the industry to think smarter because he is also bringing change. The perfect storm is the one confronting the maritime industry. It is one which will disrupt all elements of the shipping industry – is technology-driven and in some cases is also self-inflicted.

Brexit Prompts Ship Insurers to Mull New Outposts

U.K.-regulated ship insurers are preparing plans to open new outposts in European Union jurisdictions such as Luxembourg and Cyprus, fearing that Brexit will hinder access to the EU's financial market, industry sources involved say. Britain dominates the global marine insurance market and losing access to specialist Protection and Indemnity (P&I) clubs - marine insurers owned by shipping firms - could further weaken other parts of its multi-billion pound shipping services sector.

Market Forces Down Ship Operating Costs

The cost of operating cargo ships has fallen for two successive years but is forecast to rise in 2017 and beyond, according to the latest Ship Operating Costs Annual Review and Forecast 2016/17 report published by global shipping consultancy Drewry. 2016 was another very difficult year for most shipowners and operators. Weak freight rates, declining asset values, eroded profitability and denuded cash balances have forced shipowners to reduce costs wherever possible, and vessel operating expenses have been no exception.

Photo: The Swedish Club

The Swedish Club Hosts Seminar in China

The Swedish Club opened its doors to senior shipowners and brokers from across Asia last week, welcoming them to the Club’s latest Marine Insurance Seminar, specifically designed for the Asian markets. The event was held in China, at the Zhuhai Marriott Hotel. Run over two days, almost 100 delegates representing China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore and Vietnam participated in the wide ranging program. The Swedish Club runs a program of Marine Insurance Seminars in key maritime insurance centers around the world…

IUMI President Dieter Berg

New Asian Hub for IUMI

The International Union of Marine Insurance (IUMI) has announced the opening of a new overseas hub in Asia – this is the first time in the organization’s 142 year history that it has established a permanent presence outside of Europe. Making the announcement at the 4th Asia Marine Insurance Conference, IUMI President, Dieter Berg said, “The Asian marine insurance market accounts for almost 30% of global premium income and global trade in this region continues to grow. The opening of our new Asian hub, based in Hong Kong, recognises this significant contribution.

Simon Williams (IUMI)

IUMI: Gloomy Outlook for Offshore Energy Insurance Sector

Speaking at yesterday’s IUMI Genova conference, Simon Williams, Chairman of IUMI’s offshore energy committee, warned that the offshore energy sector was facing a series of significant challenges. He said: “We have not witnessed this level of downturn for 30 years – a drastic reduction in the oil price and a slowdown in activity coupled with a very soft insurance market where capacity continues to increase”. The depressed oil price has forced operators and contractors to reduce their activity which has driven down the premium base of the energy account.