The 'A' rated North of England P&I club achieved another positive renewal on 20 February 2005 with healthy year-on-year increases in tonnage, premiums and deductibles. It marks another milestone in the club's continuing programme of consolidation, further boosting both its financial strength and membership quality.
The total entered fleet grew to over 2700 ships totalling some 54 million GT, up from 50 million GT at the last renewal. This was despite a net reduction of 0.5 million GT at renewal due to terms not being offered or agreed with a number of accounts. The total number of members remains unchanged over the year at 325.
'As in previous years, most of our development was achieved from existing members prior to renewal,' says underwriting director Paul Jennings. 'More significantly nearly all of this has been in owned tonnage, which increased 10% to 44 million GT. Chartered entries remain unchanged at around 10 million GT.'
According to Jennings, seven new members joined the club during the year and three more began an entry at renewal. 'These are first-rank owners who have taken the time to explore our personality before deciding to proceed. They share our commitment to quality and we look forward to enjoying long and mutually beneficial working relationships with them,' he says.
Finance director Alan Wilson says the club was also able to achieve further significant increases in premiums and deductibles across the board. 'These increases are a testament to the loyalty and commitment of our members, who fully understand their club's strategy to achieve a technical breakeven underwriting result and thus maintain its financial strength,' he says.
Overall Wilson says he is satisfied the club successfully achieved its pre-renewal objectives of further consolidation, accurate premium rating, improved membership quality, increased entries from existing members and continued attraction of quality new members.
Earlier this month leading credit-rating agency Standard & Poor's confirmed North of England had become one of the world's financially strongest marine mutuals when it upgraded the club to a full interactive 'A' rating with a stable outlook. The agency said it believes the club will 'continue out-performing its peers'.