A majority share of more than $2 billion in claims is the potential sum reinsurers will absorb from the losses caused by the blocking of the Suez Canal because of the lodging of the Ever Given, according to global reinsurer SCOR.
Last year, the ultra-large container ship blocked the largest man-made canal causing a bottleneck which resulted in supply chain delays that continued to be felt months after the incident.
According to SCOR, with insurance policies originating from all over the world and with many parties involved in the event looking to recover part of their loss, it will take many years to settle the claims from these losses.
Sylvain Gauden, chief underwriting officer for marine and energy reinsurance at SCOR commented: “The grounding of the giant Ever Given has shown the world the hidden reality of our economic system.”
He added: “Understanding the consequences of such an event means taking a holistic view. “Who are the stakeholders? Which insurance policies can respond? What is their exposure? How much is this going to cost? All branches of marine insurance are concerned, and the interests are multiple and sometimes divergent.”
As many as 400 ships were blocked in total due to the lodging of the vessel. It took six days and an intensive international rescue operation to achieve its release.
Many parties were involved in this incident, these include the shipowner, the charterer, the owners of the goods, even the Suez Canal. All of them with their respective insurance policies originating all over the world.
SCOR noted, they all had claims which included physical damage (to the Ever Given), loss of revenue (on the part of the Suez Canal Authority), the cost of the salvage operations and business interruption (for owners and charterers of the blocked vessels), loss of perishables and cargo delays, as well as damage to the canal itself.
The reinsurer concluded that it will take many years to settle the claims from the Ever Given and the process will include much debate about who is liable.