Shipowner directors of the 65 million GT North of England P&I club have decided on general premium increases for the 2007/8 policy year of 2.5 percent for freight demurrage and defense (FD&D) cover and 7.5 percent for protecting and indemnity (P&I) cover. P&I deductibles will also rise by $250.
The increases – which are broadly in line with industry averages and the same as those set for 2006/7 – are deemed necessary to maintain the ‘A’ rated club’s financial position in a continuing adverse claims environment with an uncertain investment outlook. They will take effect at renewal on 20 February 2007.
Deputy managing director Paul Jennings points out there has been a large deterioration in International Group pool claims in 2006/7. 'A concern for all clubs is the increasing number and level of pool claims, which is a significant component of our future budgeting requirements. Claims reported to the pool in the first six months of 2006/7 reached a record level compared with half-year figures in 2005/6 and 2004/5,' says Jennings.
Deputy managing director Alan Wilson reports that North of England’s conservatively structured investment portfolio, with 36% in equities and the remainder in bonds and cash, continues to perform above the benchmark index but – though returns to date have been satisfactory – the outlook remains uncertain.
North of England currently insures some 330 member groups from around the world, with a total P&I entry of 3000 vessels of 65 million GT (52 million GT owned and 13 million GT chartered).