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Marsh McLennan collaborates with Ukraine to provide insurance for Black Sea grain shipments

15th November 2023 - Author: Kane Wells

Marsh McLennan, in collaboration with the Ukrainian government, the Export Credit Agency of Ukraine, Ukreximbank, Ukrgasbank and DZ Bank, has launched a new facility named ‘Unity’ to provide “affordable insurance supporting the export of grain and other critical food supplies globally from Ukraine’s Black Sea ports.”

marsh-mclennan-logoUnderwritten by insurers based at Lloyd’s of London, Marsh McLennan explained that Unity will provide up to $50 million in hull and separate protection & indemnity (P&I) war risk insurance.

Ukreximbank, the State Export-Import Bank of Ukraine, and state-owned Ukrainian bank, Ukrgasbank, will provide standby letters of credit, each confirmed by DZ Bank, to support the facility which itself is backed by the Ukraine Ministry of the Economy, providing shipowners and charterers with war risk insurance in the absence of safe corridors.

This launch follows June’s announcement when Marsh McLennan committed to provide services on a pro-bono basis to the Ukrainian government which includes building a data platform for the assessment of war risks in Ukraine, strategic advisory services from Oliver Wyman, and catastrophe reinsurance modelling from Guy Carpenter.

Marsh McLennan has underlined that it will extend the new Unity facility to clients of Lloyd’s of London registered brokers, to provide added support to ongoing humanitarian efforts and alleviate continued pressure on supply chains and global food security.

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John Doyle, President and Chief Executive Officer, Marsh McLennan, commented, “Marsh McLennan is committed to mobilizing our unique expertise to support global food security and stability.

“The launch of this insurance facility will especially benefit the developing nations that buy much of Ukraine’s grain and also help Ukraine’s future recovery and reconstruction endeavors. Through these efforts, we are fulfilling our purpose as a company to give our communities and clients the confidence to thrive.”

Denys Shmyhal, Prime Minister of Ukraine, said, “The launch of the Unity facility will enable Ukraine to provide vital food supplies to the world at the same time as supporting the Ukrainian economy and keeping the Black Sea open for international trade.

“This partnership between the Ukrainian government, Marsh McLennan and Lloyd’s of London is a sign of confidence in our economy and demonstrates that Ukraine is open for business.”

Marcus Baker, Global Head of Marine, Cargo & Logistics, Marsh, noted, “The creation of this public-private partnership, with insurers working in tandem with the Ukrainian government and its banks, will accelerate the urgent resumption of vital grain exports amid the ongoing effects of this brutal conflict. Unity’s unique structure will enable underwriters to price risks at more affordable levels than those experienced in recent months.”

John Neal, CEO, Lloyd’s, added, “Lloyd’s welcomes the establishment of this insurance facility, which brings together the expertise of our market to provide an innovative solution that will ensure the safe transport of Ukrainian grain and agricultural products out of the Black Sea and help alleviate global food insecurity.”

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