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Hiscox lead insurer for Turkey airport attacked by terrorists

Posted On: Jun. 30, 2016 12:00 AM CST

Hiscox Ltd. said Thursday that the company is the lead insurer for terrorism cover for Istanbul's Ataturk Airport, where 43 people killed during a terrorist attack on Tuesday.

Richard Halstead, line underwriter for war, terrorism and political violence for the London-based company, said Hiscox is the lead insurer for the terrorism cover, which includes property damage and business interruption. The company has had a relationship with the airport dating back to 2005, Mr. Halstead said, adding that it is “very much a legacy account.”

“It's been a very long term relationship with the client,” Mr. Halstead said. “The threat situation in Turkey unfortunately has changed and elevated significantly over the last couple of years, but we've always stuck with this client. We don't believe you should quit when the going gets tough.”

Although there was a tragic loss of life, Mr. Halstead said there was not a great deal of physical damage and the airport was able to reopen fairly quickly, limiting the market loss. He added that the exposure is “well within the arena of what we would typically write on an airport, which is of course a high threat target anywhere around the world and especially in Turkey.”

Mr. Halstead also said there is a loss adjustor on site who is doing an additional assessment. The broker is London-based United Insurance Brokers Group, and Hiscox writes this business through Lloyd's of London.

News accounts have said the three suicide bombers who attacked the airport were from Russia, Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan.

Mr. Halstead said “we have to be cognizant of the fact that the threat environment is changing across the world.”