ABU DHABI ø Gulf Arab insurers continue to cut back on coverage for
cargo shipments to Iraq.
Industry sources said leading insurers in the Gulf Cooperation Council
have significantly reduced war risk coverage to insure business to or in
Iraq. The sources said the refusal to provide such insurance has hampered
the supply of civilian cargo to Iraq.
In April, GCC insurers decided to suspend coverage for cargo destined
for Iraqi transports, Middle East Newsline reported. The sources said the insurers were willing to insure
cargo until the Iraqi port. But from the port, the cargo would not have been
GCC insurers have been led by the industry in Bahrain. Insurance
companies in Bahrain were expected to benefit from a new Saudi law that
would open the kingdom to foreign firms.
International insurers, such as Lloyds of London, have been willing to
provide some war coverage. But the lack of competition drove up the price of
war risk coverage.
GCC insurers have offered coverage to preferred clients when backed by
massive reinsurance support from Lloyds, the sources said. They said the
premium could amount to 100 times the normal war risk premium in other