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Insurer Marsh sees demand spike for Persian Gulf violence cover

MARSH, one of the world's largest insurance brokers and risk advisers, has seen a spike in clients' enquiries for political violence cover in the Persian Gulf after attacks on tankers and oil installations rattled the region last year, an executive said

31 January 2020 - 19:00

MARSH, one of the world's largest insurance brokers and risk advisers, has seen a spike in clients' enquiries for political violence cover in the Persian Gulf after attacks on tankers and oil installations rattled the region last year, an executive said.

Marsh has hired over 100 people in the Gulf over the past six months and expects the firm's operations to grow further in the region, particularly in advisory services, 'cyber resilience' and crisis management.



'Enquiries have doubled since tanker attacks last summer, so over a period of six months or so,' Marsh JLT Specialty Mideast/Africa chief Gaurav Bhatnagar told Reuters.



'Previously clients wouldn't look at political risk insurance as much, or they wouldn't look at specific insurers who provide sabotage and terrorism cover, or the political violence cover ... suddenly all of those elements have become much more prominent and our clients, the ones more sophisticated in that space, are asking more regularly what protection we can provide,' Mr Bhatnagar said.



Military tensions in the Gulf have risen this month after a top Iranian general was killed in a US air strike and Iran retaliated with missile attacks against American bases in Iraq. The strikes followed months of escalation, which included attacks on tankers in Gulf waters and on Saudi oil sites, including the world's largest oil processing facility.



Insurance costs for ships sailing through the Middle East increased last year after the tanker attacks, and industry sources told Reuters this month they expected war risk premiums to rise sharply following rocket strikes in Iraq.


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