Standard P&I Club has said in its post-board meeting bulletin that it expects to record an underwriting surplus this year, “largely due to prior claims improvements”. As such, notwithstanding the fact that inflationary conditions of between 5% and 6% per annum remain for P&I claims, the club said that its finances were strong, and the current 2016/17 forecast, “bolstered by healthy investment performance at the mid-year point and improvements on prior years”, is for free reserves to increase at the end of the financial year.
The board has decided to make a 5% return of mutual call in respect of the 2016/17 policy year.
Conditions for investments remained challenging and the club’s portfolio remains defensively positioned. It has benefited from positive contributions from bonds, equities, forwards, alternatives and gold, Standared said.
For the forthcoming February 2017 renewal, the board remains committed to achieving a balanced underwriting position.
Given the improved underwriting performance over recent years, Standard’s board determined that no general increase should be applied to the February 29th 2017 renewal to any class of P&I premium (mutual, charterers or offshore) or defence premium. Bespoke renewal terms will be agreed with members whose claim and risk profiles are out of line with their premiums.
Tankers make up 33% of Standard Club’s tonnage, containers 27% and dry bulk 25%. Offshore energy is 12%, while small craft and cruise ships contribute just 2% and 1% respectively.
Geographically there is a wide distribution, with Greece (11% of owned tonnage), the Nordic region (9%), Japan (8%) and Singapore (7%) being the four largest contributors. The US contributes 5% and the UK 3%.
Release call percentages remain at 2%, 3% and 7% of ETP for the three open policy years of 2014/15, 2015/16 and 2016/17. The 2014/15 policy year is expected to be closed in May 2017.
At the board meeting, three new board directors were welcomed to the board of The Standard Club: Mrs Harjeet Joshi from The Shipping Corporation of India Ltd, Mr Tomomaru Kuroyanagi from Kumiai Navigation Pte Ltd and Mr James Woodrow from China Navigation Co Ltd.
The board also took the opportunity to thank Mr Rob Clarke and Mr SS Teo, who retired from the board with effect from the end of the meeting, and Mr JB Rae-Smith and Mr Alberto Chiarini, who have retired from the board since the last meeting in Athens.