Historically strong in Latin America and with significant growth globally over the past decade, particularly in Europe and Asia, Barents Re remains one of the pre-eminent Bonds reinsurers worldwide.

In 2018, rates were stable across international Bonds markets whilst growth in Latin America was hindered by a number of general elections, which tend to create a hiatus in large infrastructure projects. Once new administrations settle into their tenure, the large project market is revitalised with new opportunities arising for specialist Bonds reinsurers such as ourselves. For our Latin American business, the many political changeswillaffordustheopportunitytodevelopour Bonds business in infrastructure and construction projects across the region.

At this stage a year ago, we foresaw an increase in the number of reinsurers and banks collaborating on complex transactions which we believed would be a key driver of large-scale projects. This has proven to be the case. Alongside our prudent progress in Latin America, we were very active last year in building the Barents brand and forging new relationships to keep the pipeline of business flowing. New partnerships in countries such as Turkey and Spain exemplify this approach.

In Turkey, we spoke at the Surety Bonds Seminar in Istanbul on the new Turkish Public Procurement Law approving surety bonds in public tenders. The construction industry will be a significant driver of Turkey’s economic development in the next ten years as billions are to be invested in new buildings as well as demolishing and rebuilding old properties in line with new construction regulations.

This event provided the ideal platform for Barents to speak about its construction Bonds expertise and build its credentials in the country and the wider region.

In Europe, we continued to seek out niche opportunities such as those presented at the Galician Shipping Association (ACLUNAGA) conference in Vigo. The purpose of the event was to demonstrate to shipbuilders, shipowners, banks and financial institutions the benefits of an insurance bond to release a shipyard’s bank credit lines and ease the problems arising from the complexities of large shipbuilding transactions. By providing a complementary financial solution to work alongside traditional bank guarantees, our reinsurance capacity can diminish the financial risks associated with big shipbuilding projects.

The combination of successful business development initiatives and retaining our reputation as one of the leading Bonds underwriters puts us in an excellent position to capitalise on new opportunities in 2019 and beyond.