Tuesday, February 15, 2000

Gard P&I plans management cooperation with hull and machinery insurer

The second largest P & I Club, Norway's Assuranceforeningen Gard, plans to merge management of its operations with that of the Marine and Energy DIvision of If P&C Insurance Ltd.

Gard provides P&I cover for 12 per cent of the world's ocean-going tonnage. The Marine and Energy activity of If consists of the Hull & Machinery, Loss of Hire and Energy businesses of Vesta and Storebrand. They underwrite some 6 per cent of world Hull and Machinery business worldwide and 8 per cent of global energy business.

Gard and If" announced last October that they would examine the possible benefits of forming a jointly-owned management company through which to manage the operations of Gard and If's Marine and Energy Division. Now Gard's Executive Committee has decided to recommend to Gard's Committee that the joint venture be formed. The board of If has agreed the terms of the arrangement, subject to the approval of the Gard committee and the Gard membership and to certain regulatory consents. An extraordinary generalmeeting of the Gard's members will be called for March 31  if the full Gard committee endorses the decision of the executive committee.

John Bernander, managing director of the Gard P&I Club, and CEO designate of the joint management company, said: "Gard and If will retain their own identities with full control of underwriting and claims handling and there will be no mingling of the liabilities or funds. However, the joint operations, which represent a unique management approach in Scandinavia, should enable both Gard and If to realize significant cost savings and provide improved services to shipowners."

The joint company will be owned 60 per cent by Gard and 40 per cent by If, but with equal voting rights.Implementation of the agreements is planned to take effect from July 1, 2000.

Navy gives MacGregor "outstanding" contract
performance rating

Cargo access specialist MacGregor has earned its second successive "outstanding"performance rating from the U.S. Navy, acknowledging its contribution to the Strategic Sealift Ship program

The rating is determined and granted by the U.S .Navy Award Fee Board, based on stringent criteria governing contract performance. The evaluation leading to the award embraces supplier performance in numerous cost, schedule, technical and management areas.

At the latest presentation made by MacGregor to Award Fee Board members,
consisting of Naval Sea Systems Command, Military Sealift Command and Defense Contract Management Center personnel, the group received 60 evaluation grades that were all "outstanding."

A strong relationship between MacGregor and the U.S. Navy has matured through the Sealift Program which is committed to securing the country's strategic interests by ensuring full logistical support to its military forces anywhere in the world.

The Sealift program consists of 20 ships in total, both newbuilding and conversion projects, at U.S. yards. This is creating an impressive fleet of specialized ships with RoRo systems and deck cranes supplied by MacGregor under a"fixed price plus award fee"contract . Placed in 1993, it the largest single cargo handling equipment order ever placed with the group.

The 11 ships that have entered service so far will be joined this year by another five, a trio in 2001 and the final ship in 2002. Each MacGregor shipset comprises twosingle-pedestal twin cranes ­ the largest pedestal-mounted rotating marine cranes ever installed ­ a stern slewing ramp, sideport ramp systems port and starboard, andvarious cargo handling vehicles.

Operational feedback from the ships already commissioned has confirmed the
excellent performance of the MacGregor cargo handling systems in achieving
outstanding loading and discharge times.


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