Whilst the devastating impacts of the pandemic continue (rightly) to dominate thinking, it is easy to forget the other serious challenges faced by the shipping industry.
Not the least of which is the risk of a major cyber-attack (remember Maersk in 2017?). The increasing sophistication of such attacks poses a threat to all forms of commercial shipping and trading activity. A successful attack has the potential to cause widespread disruption to trade flows and undermine investor and consumer confidence. All at a time when the industry and its customers can ill afford it.
This combination with Astaara looks to be a far-sighted move by the West of England, and could pave the way for similar investments by others in the P&I sector.
As ever, industry players need to actively manage their exposure to the threat of cyber-attack. While insurance plays an important part in this, the legal and regulatory framework should not be forgotten.