The UK P&I Club (the UK Club), one of the oldest shipping protection and indemnity insurance mutuals, is pleased to announce that ratings agency Standard and Poor’s has extended its ‘A – ‘ rating to The United Kingdom Mutual Steamship Assurance Association (Europe) Ltd. (the Europe Club). This news follows the November announcement that Standard and Poor’s upgraded the outlook for The United Kingdom Mutual Steamship Assurance Association (Bermuda) Ltd. (the Bermuda Club) to “Positive.” This upgraded ‘Positive’ outlook also extends to the Europe Club.
As part of an internal reorganisation ahead of the introduction of Solvency II regulations, the Europe Club will become the group’s main provider of direct insurance from February 2013. In its review, Standard and Poor’s recognised the upcoming change and stated that it considers the Europe club to be “core to the group”.
Hugo Wynn-Williams, Chief Executive of Thomas Miller P&I, the UK P&I Club’s managers, said: “Recognition for both UK Club entities with the same, positive credit rating is welcome. The Club has worked to maintain balanced underwriting and a strong capital position in an environment of rising claims costs and volatile investments.”
The UK Club’s funds have continued to strengthen in the first half of 2012 with free reserves and capital increasing a further $8 million to $494 million at 20th August 2012. The UK Club is one of the strongest clubs financially in the International Group with a free reserve ratio of 167 per cent.
UK P&I Club
The United Kingdom Mutual Steam Ship Assurance Association (Bermuda) Limited is generally known as the UK P&I Club. As a mutual association since its establishment in 1869 the Club has existed solely for the benefit of its members. Its structure as a mutual insurance association enables it to respond to the changing needs of its assureds and allows it to provide superior service, attention and coverage.
The UK P&I Club is directed by the members. Overall control lies with the directors, elected by the members from amongst themselves. The directors normally meet four times a year to formulate policy on calls, the scope of cover, finance, underwriting and claims matters, reinsurance and issues affecting the P&I world. They resolve specific claims which may not fall clearly within the cover.
Thomas Miller, the Club’s managers, is organised to respond promptly to requests for assistance and to provide informed advice and help with members’ claims. Individual support goes far beyond that normally provided by a commercial insurer.
The UK Club’s size and the scale of the managers’ operations has enabled the latter to develop specialist skills and expertise seldom seen in marine P&I.
In 350 ports around the world, on-the-spot help and local expertise is always available to members and the masters of their ships from the Club’s 460 correspondents and claims handling services and advice from the network of offices and branches in London, Piraeus, New Jersey, San Francisco, Hong Kong, Singapore, Tokyo, Beijing and Shanghai.