Underwriters Slashing Hull Premiums

Veteran underwriter Jonathan Jones has claimed that top Norwegian insurers are slashing rates to unsustainable levels – as two top marine insurers offer hull cover for as little as 0.07% of vessel values.

Gard and Norwegian Hull Club protection-and-indemnity (P&I) mutuals stand accused of offering “suicidally” low rates, suggesting the low premium indicates a hidden cross-subsidy.

According to Jones, a 0.07% rate means an underwriter would have to insure a vessel for more than 1,400 years to cover a total-loss payout.

The price slashing has prompted a campaign for leading underwriters to follow a code of conduct that does not disadvantage the following market and is pressing the International Union of Marine Insurance (IUMI) to take a position on the issue.